While most local police departments get reports of cyber crimes, the vast majority say they lack money and training needed to combat it, says a new survey reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Cyber threats and crimes against children, identity theft, and a variety of cyber attacks on businesses and individuals are rising nationwide. A survey conducted last year by the FBI’s Pittsburgh office and Duquesne University found that 77 percent of local police departments got complaints about cyber crime and 89 percent of departments surveyed say they lack the money and necessary training to respond effectively. Only 13 percent of departments were able to spend more than $500 on cyber crime training in the last year.
Duquesne and the FBI would like to get state and federal money to set up an online program to train local police departments to deal with cyber crime. While federal officials offer training programs in the Washington, D.C., area, those programs can cost thousands of dollars and take officers away from their local jobs. An online cyber crime training program would be much cheaper for cash-strapped police departments. The FBI investigates cyber crime and makes many arrests “but there is so much of it,” said agent William Shore. “You have to know the technology and you have to stay on top of it,” because techniques used by cyber criminals all over the world keep changing and improving.