The Inquirer-Home

UK Home Office to tackle phone thefts and car technology malware

Theresa May will work with industry on security
Thu Sep 04 2014, 12:46
The government will tackle sophisticated car theft and mobile phone mugging

UK HOME SECRETARY Theresa May has told the police force that she is there for it and will help it better tackle cyber threats and consumer malware attacks.

May was speaking in front of the Reform think tank when she spoke about increasing incoming threats like malware that can part a punter from his vehicle. She said that the government had been saddled with an inherited and blighted policing system, adding that the Home Office began an overhaul of it four years ago that rolls onwards.

She described the inherited system as being made up of "inadequate institutions and structures", adding that it has "an unaccountable system of governance, poor productivity undermined by bureaucracy and centralisation, wasteful procurement and a hopelessly out-of-date system of pay".

Forgive us, but that sounds a lot like government.

As part of the reforms the cops are likely to get a lot more technology, such as wearable cameras and the promise of 'apps', said May, and while this is all being reformed, so the Home Office is trying to remove some of the drivers of crime.

One of these drivers is the lure of certain kinds of phone to thieves, and May said that consumers will soon be advised of which phones are most likely to be ripped from their hands so that they can, if they want, choose not to buy one.

"The Home Office is developing proposals to further prevent mobile phone theft," she said.

"These include steps that consumers can take to improve personal security, industry innovation to develop new security features and the publication of a new Mobile Phone Theft Ratio to inform the public about the handsets which have been most at risk of being targeted by thieves."

With regard to cars, May warned that hackers are building electronic keys that do not even have to touch a car to gain access.

"More than a third of vehicles stolen in London do not involve taking the owner's keys. Instead, car thieves might break into a car and programme a new electronic key. They might use sophisticated devices to 'grab' the security coding when the owner uses their key so they can use it themselves," she added.

"And there have been reports that they could even use 'malware' to commandeer vehicle systems via satellites and issue remote demands to unlock doors, disable alarms and start car engines."

The home secretary said that such techniques could be used against other physical assets, or buildings, adding that the Home Office will work with the car industry to try to build in protection against the attacks. µ


Share this:

blog comments powered by Disqus
Subscribe to INQ newsletters

Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ

INQ Poll

Happy new year!

What tech are you most looking forward to in 2015