This evening the Number 10 Website had 8,245 petitions, on all sorts of subject from the serious to the frivolous. That on e-Crime has now climbed out of the noise. It may have only 348 signatures: but what quality!
Recent signatories include not only the President of the British Computer Society, signing as President, but the authors of some of the most significant books on Business and Internet Ethics, such as the Art of Moral Management and Cybernauts Awake. The list also includes the Heads of Business Risk and Information Security for many of the largest UK-based financial services players and mutii-nationals and at least two members of the House of Lords Committee in Personal Internet Safety.
And the organisers of the petition have yet to start their planned publicity campaign.
I would, howver, like to also plug two other petitions, both also closely linked to the future of the UK as a globally competitive location for ICT and Knowledge based businesses.
That on the status of engineers comes to an end on the 23rd January. This has over 34,000 signatures and has reached Number 5 but there is only a week to go if you too believe that without an adequate supply of professionally respected chartered engineers our future is bleak.
The other is that on the funding of the professional update and conversion training that is essential to keep our workforce at all levels, technicians as well as engineers up to date. This petition has reached number 10, with over 18,000 signatures and, as I said in a previous blog, the topic has been picked up by the DIUS Select Committee but is no less important.
By comparison the petition on the need for effective action again e-Crime has a long way to go.and the comparative lack of numbers to date could be also be used as ammunition by those who do not wish to see more resources spent on actively tracking, tracing and “removing” the e-criminals.
I recently learned that one of the “official sousveilance” systems described at the recent EURIM Transformational Government Dialogues actually paid for its costs by enabling the police to identify and remove the two individuals responsible for over 50% of the graffiti in the London Borough concerned. This alone had led to a reduction in overtime costs among those responsible for removing graffiti that was greater than the cost of the technology used.
How much of the £3 billion a year spent on information security in the UK is necessitated by a the actions of only handful of cybercriminals? How much could be saved and how much could internet response, resilience and reliablity be improved if users got their act together and co-operated to remove them and the systemic vulnerabilities they exploit, instead of spending ever more on displacement activity and technology sticking plasters,
Unless and until we have an operation like that called for in the petiiton on the Number 10 website, will we even know?
And who benefits from that ignorance?
As I said in my first blog – Those who remain silent get what they deserve – ignored.