The number of policemen/women that are currently serving in the force and have been trained on combating cyber crime. Each servicemen must serve within your constituency.
Here’s further breakdown of each question.
The number of policemen/women currently trained on cyber crime
The number of policemen/women currently serving in your constituency
In relation to the number of policemen/women currently serving in your constituency this information is available via the link below
All officers are required to complete a cyber crime NCALT e-learning package which provides a basic awareness of cyber crime. However the numbers of specialist trained officers is exempt by virtue of:
Section 31 (a)(b) – Law Enforcement.
Please find following detailed reasoning on the application of this exemption.
Disclosing details of the numbers within individual specialist units would provide a person who may be intent on criminal activities with invaluable information as to the capability and tactical position of the Force in those areas, thus allowing them to adjust their own tactics accordingly.
Favour of Disclosure
Police Forces need to be properly equipped in order to meet the demands placed upon them. This information could go some way towards reassuring the public that the West Midlands Police Force is adequately prepared in all areas.
There is a public interest in providing the numbers of officers trained to investigate cyber crime as it would provide an awareness to the public that potential more funding/ resources maybe needed to be provided for this type of crime,
Considerations Favouring Non-Disclosure
The release of information disclosing the exact capabilities of West Midlands Police would furnish individuals or groups with the opportunity to fully understand the police capacity and therefore be more effective in carrying out criminal activities. It is the duty of the police to protect the public from all criminal attacks. There is evidence that criminals use information to change tactics and method of attack. Therefore the safety of the public could be compromised and inappropriate release could cause damage to the service and the community.
This would impact on trust and confidence within the local communities, with particular areas feeling vulnerable, criminal activities would increase within these areas.
For a public interest test, issues that favour release need to be measured against issues that favour non-disclosure. The public interest is not what interests the public, or a particular individual, but what will be the greater good, if released, to the community as a whole.
We recognise that the public interest in being open and transparent is of great importance to all and release of information may assist in the public being more aware of the work that the police are carrying out. However, while the public interest considerations favouring disclosure are noted, this must be balanced with the impact any release would have on the operational capability and tactical approach of the police.
Because the Freedom of Information Act is ‘applicant blind’, any information released under the Act is available to everyone. It is well documented that criminals will use every advantage they can gain to successfully carry out their criminality.
Therefore it is my view that the public safety from non-disclosure is of greater importance than the advantage of public confidence from the disclosure of this information.
At this time, it would not be in the public interest to release this information. West Midlands Police will not disclose information that could harm the public or that could compromise the safety and operational effectiveness of the Force.
In addition to the above response, West Midlands Police can neither confirm nor deny that it holds any other information with regard to an exempt body as the duty in Section 1(1)(a) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 does not apply by virtue of the following exemption:
Section 23(5) Information Supplied by, or concerning, certain Security Bodies
Section 23 is a class based absolute exemption and there is no requirement to consider the public interest in this case.
Confirming or denying the existence of whether any other information is held would contravene the constrictions laid out with Section 23 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 in that this stipulates a generic bar on disclosure of any information applied by, or concerning, certain Security Bodies.
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