Cybercrime experts converge on Coventry

Leading figures in cybercrime prevention will head to Coventry University in May for an information security event

Coventry University is hosting the event in conjunction with the Warwickshire and West Mercia police forces.

The conference and workshop, which takes place on Friday 23 May, is aimed at anyone with an interest in cyber security issues – including educators, businesses and authorities – and will be opened by Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Ball.

Former GCHQ head of information risk management, David Booth, will lead a ‘Question Time’-style debate at the event alongside Dr Emma Philpott, founder of the renowned Malvern Cyber Security Cluster, and John Unsworth, head of intelligence at the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau within the City of London Police.

The event’s technology workshops – hosted in the ethical hacking lab in Coventry University’s Engineering and Computing Building – will simulate real-time cyber security challenges to help improve awareness of risk, ability to spot a computer attack and knowledge of how to prevent it.

A single cyber security breach is likely to cost a small business between £35,000 and £65,000, and a large corporation between half a million pounds and £850,000, according to a recent report by the UK government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills1.

The same report indicated that 93% of large companies had a security breach in the previous year, while 87% of small firms suffered similar attacks.

Detective chief inspector Sean Paley from Warwickshire and West Mercia Police said: “This will be a fast-moving and dynamic day working on real-time cyber challenges with industry specialists in some of the best training facilities in the Midlands.

“It’s a unique opportunity to network with leading experts in computer security and to ensure business and personal resilience in the face of the increasing threat of cybercrime. Our aim with this event is to develop people’s understanding and knowledge of risk, threat and opportunity in the field of internet-based crime.”

Dr James Shuttleworth, associate head of the Department of Computing at Coventry University, said: “We’re delighted to be hosting this event and to be bringing together some of the foremost minds in cyber security to share the latest knowledge and expertise on a critically important issue.

“Businesses and individuals are increasingly vulnerable to ever more sophisticated network attacks, whether on personal or work computers or through the smartphone in your pocket. However there’s a lot that can be done to prevent or dramatically reduce the chances of falling victim to such attacks, and this event is about helping people and industry understand how so they can be vigilant and well-prepared.”

The conference and workshop comes as Coventry University continues to build its profile in the field of cyber security, with a course portfolio including a popular undergraduate degree in ethical hacking and a master’s course in forensic computing.

Anyone seeking further information on the conference or wishing to register should contact Karen Collins at West Mercia Police on 01386 591752 or karen.collins@westmercia.pn.police.uk

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