A beefed-up Financial and Cybercrime Investigation Branch (FCIB) has been launched to combat the rising threat in our community.
The Branch, which includes the Major Fraud Investigation Section, has been renamed the Serious and Organised Financial Crime Investigation Section (SOFCIS) and boosted by 13 new staff, taking the total working in the Section to 90.
This has come about from an operational restructure which follows a full review by SAPOL, plus this new section supports the implementation of the South Australia Police Cybercrime Strategy 2018-2020.
SOFCIS continues to provide a specialist fraud investigational response but also broadens its focus to proactively target professional facilitators who are assisting those involved in serious and organised crime, including money laundering.
The rapid growth of technology in everyday life has impacted upon law enforcement with most crimes now having a technology element, increasing the demand for digital forensic services.
In response, the Electronic Crime Section has been split to create two specialist areas – the Digital Evidence Section and the Cybercrime Investigation Section.
The cybercrime section will be supported by intelligence and crime prevention personnel, including two new Cybercrime Training and Prevention Officers.
A focus on community engagement is also expected to provide an increased capability to detect, disrupt, prevent, investigate and prosecute cyber criminals.
Ten new sworn officers have been recruited to the Digital Evidence Section, supplementing seven specialist positions recruited in 2018.
Minister for Police, Correctional Services and Emergency Services Corey Wingard said this would provide SAPOL with the ability to respond to an evolving criminal environment.
“Nefarious people are increasingly using technology to commit crimes, so it is important SAPOL are well-equipped to counter that threat,” Minister Wingard said.
Assistant Commissioner Scott Duval said: “This is about positioning SAPOL for the future and the growing trend for phones, devices and computers to be used to facilitate crime or used to assist in a crime.
“This is our plan for the future with FCIB able to assist other areas of SAPOL with investigations, data extraction and specialist digital work.”