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What are the challenges of dealing with internet crime?

15 May 2018

The Communications Committee continues hearing evidence for its inquiry 'The Internet: to regulate or not to regulate?' The Committee questions representatives of the National Crime Agency and the National Police Chiefs' Council. Also giving evidence are witnesses from the Internet Watch Foundation and the Metropolitan Police.


In this session the Committee explores with the witnesses the challenges of dealing with internet crime; how their organisations seek to remove illegal online content; and whether they have enough resources to deal with the scale of cybercrime.


Tuesday 15 May, Committee Room 2, Palace of Westminster

At 3.30pm

  • Susie Hargreaves OBE, Chief Executive, Internet Watch Foundation
  • Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh, National Police Chiefs' Council
  • Will Kerr, Director of Vulnerabilities, National Crime Agency
  • Donald Toon, Director of Prosperity, National Crime Agency
  • Detective Superintendent Phil Tomlinson, Head of the National Digital Exploitation Service, Metropolitan Police

Possible questions

Over the course of the session the Committee is likely to ask questions including:

  • How are hate speech and similar offences distinguished from speech which is merely offensive?
  • Is it reasonable to expect platforms or other internet hosting services to self-regulate content online?
  • How do you distinguish terrorist content from legitimate speech, especially where the content endorses a conservative religious worldview?
  • Does the adoption of encryption in various forms (including encrypted web browsers such as the Dark Net and end-to-end encryption services such as Whatsapp) make the task of law enforcement more difficult?
  • What technological tools are used by law enforcement agencies or stakeholders in determining whether content is illegal? What is the human oversight of such technology tools?

Further information

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