GREATER SUPPORT FOR VICTIMS OF CYBERCRIME
The Staffordshire Victim Gateway have now received training to help victims of cyber related fraud and online crime across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.
Staff at the Staffordshire Victim Gateway now have greater support so they can help victims of cybercrime. The Gateway has been provided with information on the affect cybercrime can have on a person and how to recover from a cyber-attack. This information will allow them to provide greater support to victims of cybercrime.
Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Arnold said: “The internet and its development brings opportunity but has also brought new, changing threats from crime and criminals.
“The Crime Survey for England and Wales estimated that around 5.8 million fraud and computer misuse offences took place between July 2015 and July 2016. Businesses and people across Staffordshire must take steps to protect themselves online in order to reduce the opportunities for criminals.
“Being a victim of cybercrime as well as traditional crime can be truly damaging and have a lasting impact on feelings of safety and wellbeing. It is vital that we offer better support for victims of cybercrime and that is exactly what the Victim Gateway will be doing. Remember, what is illegal offline is illegal online.”
MPS DEBATING GREATER PROTECTION FOR POLICE DOGS
MPs have last month debated changing the law to offer better protection for police dogs and horses. In a response to the ‘Finns Law’ petition Government have said that a change to police animal legal status is “unnecessary”. Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire Matthew Ellis is calling for a change in the law to help protect police dogs attacked in the line of duty but does not agree with parity with police officers.
The petition, which has more than 122,000 signatures, began in October 2016 after Police Dog Finn and his handler was stabbed and seriously injured in Hertfordshire. Currently, assaults on police dogs are viewed in law in the same way as causing damage to property.
Mr Ellis said:
“I am utterly outraged that the law suggests police animals are the equivalent to a piece of police equipment. Police dogs play a pivotal role in protecting us. They help enforce the law and I am at a loss to understand why injuring a police dog is seen as the same offence as kicking the door panel of a police car.
“These police animals aren’t just another piece of police kit, they feel pain, they have emotions and above all they display incredible loyalty in the line of duty. The law needs to give greater respect and stronger protection to repay this dedication to duty.
“I would strongly urge the Government to seriously consider changing the law to better protect police animals or ensure that the current law is being applied in the right way. I’m very supportive of strengthening the law in this area and making it an aggravated offence which carries a potential prison term – the same protection assistance dogs receive.
“We need to understand how we can protect police animals better to make sure that the penalty is strong enough to stop people harming those animals who put their heart and soul into keeping people safe.”
The Commissioner has supported the Staffordshire Retired Police Dog fund. More information about the fund is available at http://staffsretiredpolicedogs.org/
Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire asks everyone to beware of fraud emails offering unbelievable bargains
This year many more people will do their Christmas shopping on line so Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire Sue Arnold is urging everyone to be careful and not become victims of Christmas cyber fraud.
Sue Arnold, Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire, said:
“Christmas shopping brings with it an increase in shopping related email phishing campaigns and fraud. For example there is currently a known campaign that targets users with emails that claim to originate from Amazon. The email informs the user that a purchase has been sent out for delivery and usually asks what courier service they are using. This is done in the hope that users will click on the link to see what it is. Attachments containing malicious software are often included in these emails.
It is also important that people are very careful when paying for gifts on line, especially when offered an unbelievable bargain purchase. Everyone should enjoy their on line Christmas shopping but please remember to:
* Check emails that claim to be from shopping companies very carefully. Check for spelling and grammatical errors which could indicate the email may not be genuine
* Don’t click on links or attachments even if you have a legitimate account. Log into your account on-line and check the details that way
* Always make sure the web address you are visiting is the correct address. You can check a web address by hovering over the link without clicking it. It is better to type in an address if you are not sure or use a pre-saved favourite
* Look for the Padlock Sign in the address bar if you are paying for something online.
* Don’t share personal information, bank details or your address online when paying for that “bargain”.
* Make sure you have adequate anti-virus software that will enable your computer to flag any untrustworthy sites.
We have launched Cyber Safe Staffordshire to help people and businesses across Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent avoid becoming victims. More information on cybercrime and how to avoid becoming a victim are available on http://www.staffordshire-pcc.gov.uk/cyber-safe-staffordshire/
and by following #CyberSafeStaffs”.
Protecting the Frontline – Improving Value for Public Money
NEW REPORT CONSIDERS BENEFITS FOR THE PUBLIC FROM A JOINED UP FIRE AND POLICE ORGANISATION
Following a 10 month independent internal review across Staffordshire, a report titled “Is there a case for full integration?” has been published yesterday.
The report provides a number of recommendations and examples of how fire and police services could integrate within a single organisation whilst retaining the unique and separate services they provide to the public. A copy of the report can be viewed here www.staffordshire-pcc.gov.uk/transformation/
Matthew Ellis, Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire said:
“The recommended changes retain the identities and specialisms of each of the two services. They reduce heavy management structures to allow extra investment in the frontline operations and would provide cost effective, resilient support functions for policing and fire.
It details significant opportunities to make the most of the crossovers between the two services so they work more effectively together to make our communities safer across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.
What strikes me with this detailed report is that even if budgets were not tight it would be impossible to justify not doing something to address the duplication in support functions everyone in Staffordshire is paying for. Millions of pounds saved could be reinvested into strengthening frontline operations by increasing significantly frontline policing numbers and maintaining firefighter numbers”.
Stephen Sweeney, Chairman of the Fire and Rescue Authority for Staffordshire said:
“This has been a comprehensive piece of work which highlight the clear opportunities for the fire service and the police service to work for the benefit of communities in a more joined up way.
It maintains their individual service identities and recognises the different roles and specialisms they each provide. This must be done carefully as improved safety outcomes and better value for money must be the priorities.
The report shows how more joined up thinking, action, delivery and shared intelligence between the services will improve early intervention, prevention and operational resilience to the benefit of the public across Staffordshire”.
The forty two page report recognises some progress has been made in meeting future challenges but identifies these key opportunities:
* Sustaining both the fire and the police service in a way that copes with changing challenges and greater complexity in the future.
* Improving public safety and being more financially sustainable by working better together.
* Identifying dozens of opportunities to broaden the capability of both services, reduce duplication and prioritise investment in frontline delivery.
* Integrating some administrative and support functions that provide the same or similar things for each service. For example, there are currently one finance department for the fire service and another finance department for police; two HR functions, two IT departments and two control rooms to handle incoming phone calls.
* A greater emphasis on prevention with more effective joint working day to day, shared strategies and joined up technology that is pivotal for preventing harm before it happens.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire welcomes HMIC report on legitimacy of Police
Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) have today published a report how Staffordshire police legitimately keeps people safe and reduces crime and rated the Force as “Good”.
Matthew Ellis, Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire said:
“Whilst there is always more to be done I welcome the HMIC view that Staffordshire Police is good at how it treats the people it serves whilst acting within the law and treating staff with fairness and respect. Without this the support that the public has for policing would not be possible.
“It is also positive that today’s HMIC report recognises the important role of the Ethics, Transparency and Audit Panels (ETAP) and the Safer Neighbourhood Panels (SNP). I would like to take this opportunity to thank the panels for their tremendous work engaging with the public and providing feedback and scrutiny on the effectiveness of policing in Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent.”