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National cybercrime reporting tool launched today

Police are encouraging members of the public to report cybercrime online using a new national policing initiative and in turn play their part in helping combat online crime.

ACORN (Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network) is a national system supported by law enforcement across the country and designed specifically for online and cybercrime.

“Cybercrime and online crime are traditionally areas where we see quite a significant amount of underreporting. Embarrassment and the suggestion the victim may not know how to report or may be wasting the time of law enforcement are common factors in why people fail to report and this is simply not the case. It is only by having these crimes reported to us that we can work to prevent these crimes and ensure our response is adequate and effective.

“The new portal will allow us to not only receive the information we need to investigate these matters appropriately, but important information that can allow us to prevent others from falling victim and ensure Australia is not seen as an easy target for these offenders,” Detective Superintendent Brian Hay of the Fraud and Cybercrime Group said.

The ACORN is a joint project between the Attorney-General’s Department, CrimTrac, the Australian Crime Commission and law enforcement across the country.

Crimes that can be reported include any type of cybercrime including crimes directed at computers or other devices (such as hacking), and crimes where computers or other devices are integral to offence (such as online scams or fraud).

“For us the majority of these crimes fall into the identity theft and malware or ransomware attacks on computers. These types of crimes cost Queenslanders many millions of dollars and as such, they are crimes we are committed to preventing and investigating. Crimes such as hacking, identity theft, online scams and fraud are all included and can be reported via this website,” Detective Superintendent Hay said.

ACORN can be accessed online and allows members of the community to report these crimes, and also find out important information and advice.

“Information supplied via ACORN will be referred to the relevant law enforcement agency for follow up and investigation and will help us target these crimes efficiently and effectively.

“This type of information will also give us a greater understanding of this problem on a state and national level, which is crucial in helping us educate the community on these crimes and hopefully prevent further people becoming a victim,” he said.

For more information on ACORN or to report a cybercrime incident, visit www.acorn.gov.au

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