Home Secretary Amber Rudd is expected to announce a £9 million pledge to battle dark web criminals today.
Her speech at the CYBERUK summit in Manchester is expected to describe the dark web as a “dark and dangerous place where anonymity emboldens people to break the law in the most horrifying of ways”.
She will earmark the funds to combat criminals who exploit the anonymity of the dark web.
“Whilst criminals plot and hide behind their screens, their actions have real-life consequences for their victims,” she will say.
As part of the speech, the Home Secretary is expected to tell the story of her father’s experience as the victim of an elaborate scam involving credit card fraudsters.
She will say: “My own father was the victim of fraud, and I know from personal experience the importance of supporting those who have been victimised through no fault of their own. Now that it’s happening online, it’s happening to even more people.”
Rudd, who first cited her father’s experience during announcement of the National Economic Crime Centre, will say that response to the criminal threat of the dark web is every citizen’s responsibility.
She will say: “The world of cyber is fast developing and we need a fast-developing response to match, one that recognises that it is the responsibility of everyone in the UK to protect against the evolving threat.
“Business owners, cyber-security experts and individuals can do a lot to help too. Because in the same way that shops protect themselves from burglary with locks, alarms and security guards, I expect businesses to take equivalent precautions digitally.”
Earlier this year, paedophile Matthew Falder was convicted of 137 offences committed on the dark web after a four-year investigation by the National Crime Agency’s specialist cyber teams, bolstered by security and intelligence agencies.
The investigation proved that the dark web does not always provide s “cloak of invulnerability” but experts have argued that authorities are ultimately “powerless to close it down.”