#CyberFLASH: Canada ‘failing’ in fight against cybercrime, hacking

cgi-cyber-security-2Canada is lagging behind the U.S., Britain and other countries in defending citizens and businesses against malicious hackers and cyber-criminals, say numerous groups involved in trying to police the internet.

“We’re failing, we’re falling behind,” warns Katherine Thompson of the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance, one of Canada’s largest private-sector high-tech advocacy groups.

“We cannot continue down the path that we’re on right now,” she told CBC News. “We just went through a very long federal election where not one of the major party leaders discussed cyber-security.”

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Since 2010, Public Safety Canada has spent $245 million on defending government computer networks, safeguarding critical infrastructure and educating the public.

It has also earmarked $142 million over the next five years to tackle cyber-threats — particularly against critical infrastructure. But leaders in Canada’s policing, IT and cyber-security sectors say the federal strategy is focused primarily on national security threats and does little to combat the dramatic growth in email scams, online extortion and breaches at corporate computer networks.

Canadians are also largely in the dark about the scope of cybercrimes given the country has no central agency to track online scams and malicious electronic attacks.

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