AMSTERDAM - During the first quarter of 2021, police recorded nearly double the number of cybercrime cases in comparison to the same time last year.
Overall, police have noticed an uptake of cybercrime by 25 percent every year. Particularly, striking is the rise in fraud and hacking cases via WhatsApp. Oftentimes, a criminal pretends to be an acquittance of the victim who is in dire need of money.
Fraud also takes place frequently on online markets when a customer pays for a product but never receives anything in return. This occurred especially during the past Christmas holiday season.
The Director of Digitalization and Cybercrime for the Police, Theo van der Plas, suggested it is high time the government invests more money in tackling cybercrime. “The continuous growth of cybercrime and digitalized crime shows the huge need for further investments in digitally knowledgeable police”, van der Plas said.
“About 300 million euros should go to increasing our digital skills and to extra staff, data infrastructure and innovation”, van der Plas continued. The funds would be used in the fight against ransomware, phishing and DDoS attacks, as well as cases of WhatsApp fraud.
The extra funding would also help with providing police with the basic training to combat online crime. According to van der Plas, police are also looking to hire a large number of higher-educated people who can help in the fight against cybercrime. “By 2025, some additional 460 additional positions will be required for this.”
Since last year, it has been easier for people to report possible cases of fraud online.