A top police chief has slammed the opaque nature of the accounting practices of some of Britain’s biggest businesses. According to Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, only 12% of fraud incidents are reported to the police, and he reportedly told representatives of a number of FTSE 100 companies that they were leaving the police “in the dark about the state of threat and methods of attack” by not doing so. Executives from companies, such as BT and British Airways, were told that the level and methods of online fraud and crime were difficult to assess – most likely the case due to the fact that reports of fraud are often made to the bank but rarely reported to the police.
Howe also mentioned that it was highly likely that businesses failed to report such incidents in order to protect share prices and prevent details of vulnerabilities from reaching their competitors. He purportedly urged executives to step-up against such crimes, highlighted that the police are unable to tackle cyber-crime and fraud alone and said that “the financial sector has both an interest and a responsibility to protect citizens and businesses in the cyber-world. Telecoms companies and internet service providers have an interest and a responsibility in building up end-user trust in the digital world, and we all have a responsibility to protect children online. All of us.”