Staffordshire Police are now doing more than ever to protect the public and businesses against the threat of cybercrime they launch their first ever Digital PCSO.
PCSO Matthew Hough-Clewes has landed this innovative position – one of less than ten such PCSOs doing this specialist role in the UK. This will see him providing important advice on cyber security and how to stay safe online to residents across the county.
Matt will spend his time visiting businesses, community groups, and public events to deliver advice and reassurance in person – but his avatar alter ego will also be engaging with thousands of people via his Twitter feed @sp_digitalpcso.
Matt joined Staffordshire Police in 2009 after studying uniform public services. As he developed in his role Matt realised he enjoyed presenting and educating members of the public around crime prevention.
He said: “Cybercrime is swiftly becoming the most damaging crime a victim can experience. Millions of pounds of money and reams of sensitive data are stolen every year and a lot of this can be prevented with some simple actions.
“I’m here to show you how to protect yourself online and not be tricked into giving away info to the wrong person. There’s lots to do and I’m really excited about getting stuck in and improving cyber security in Staffordshire.”
Detective Sergeant Gary Sirrell from the West Midlands Regional Organised Crime Unit (ROCU) specialist cybercrime team welcomed Matt’s experience and understanding of the subject, saying: “I’ve sat through some cyber conferences that have been too technical – and to be honest the small percentage of people who were understanding what was being said were the ones that least needed the advice as they were probably already cyber-savvy.
“We’ll be looking for Matt to get across common sense, simple-to-implement online safety advice that can really help people protect their data, take precautions online and implement safeguards.
“A significant amount of cybercrime could be prevented in the first instance if members of the public were aware of how to protect themselves from becoming victims of online crime.”
Tweet any cyber security questions to Matt at @sp_digitalpcso
Duncan is a technology professional with over 20 years experience of working in various IT roles. He has a interest in cyber security, and has a wide range of other skills in radio, electronics and telecommunications.