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UCD favourite to become EU hub in cybercrime fight


Irish Independent Mon. Feb. 15th 2010

Tom Brady
A European headquarters for devising strategies to combat the growth in cybercrime may be based at UCD. The Dublin university is favourite to be selected as the co-ordinating hub for EU agencies involved in the fight against crime on the internet and if selected this could result in a badly-needed jobs boost for the industry here. Organised gangs are using the internet to expand their involvement in child pornogrophy, e-frauds, e-laundering, e-terrorism, phishing, identity theft, drugs and extortion. Ireland is operating a hotline as a national-alert platform and is pushing a move in Europe to improve the sharing of intelligence and become more efficient in tackling the gangs by avoiding overlapping investigations. UCD is already the location for one of only two cybercrime centres in Europe and is alone in providing a masters level qualification. Among its graduates are the heads of cybercrime at the international police agencies, Interpol and Europol. If UCD is designated as the European hub, it is expected it will attract major computer security companies to locate in Ireland and create a raft of highly skilled jobs here. The Government is backing the bid by UCD to be selected as the headquarters. A spokesman for Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said last night: "The UCD centre is at the cutting edge, in terms of its work for police forces, notably the Gardai. It has played a pivitol role in  a number of investigations."