VULNERABLE adults at risk of cyber-crime are to receive training to help safeguard them and help others from being targeted.
It has been found that vulnerable adults, specifically those on autistic-spectrum, can have strong skills in IT.
With natural abilities in this subject, and often being unemployed and socially isolated, autistic adults can fall for online criminals who encourage them to move into cyber-crime.
Now it is hoped these skills can instead go towards preventing crime by placing these adults into cyber-security roles.
The training, funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia Police, is being carried out by the UK Cyber Security Forum and IASME (an information assurance standard for small and medium-sized businesses).
It has already been highly successful in attracting people skilled in cyber-security who might otherwise be unemployed.
By successfully placing them in employment, it is hoped the number moving into cyber-crime will fall.
PCC John Campion said: “I hope this training will help not only protect vulnerable individuals within our communities becoming targeted by those involved in cyber-crime, but take their skills and fill a gap in cyber-security.”
Dr Emma Philpott, chief executive of IASME said: “With the fantastic support of the West Mercia PCC we are able to train and support talented, unemployed neuro-diverse adults into cyber security employment.
“By doing this we help these individuals and also make the whole region a much safer place to live and work.”
A report, commissioned by Internet Matters, Youthworks and the University of Kingston highlighted that society’s most vulnerable children are also in need of extra support and care in their digital lives.
The report found that young people who are in care, have special educational needs or have mental health, physical or communication difficulties, are more at risk of online harms such as cyber bullying.