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British put money behind cybercrime crackdown

The British government has earmarked about $36 million and formed an 80-member police unit to crack down on cybercrime.

The British government has earmarked about $36 million and formed an 80-member police unit to crack down on cybercrime.

The "cybercops" will work both nationally and locally to fight what the government considers the growing menace of Internet crime. The National High-Tech Crime Unit will begin work in April to help local police forces and cooperate with police abroad, British officials said.

"The significant cash injection I am announcing today will boost the police service's capability to investigate crime committed through computers, including pedophilia, fraud, extortion and hacking," British Home Secretary Jack Straw said in a statement.

The funding, announced Monday, will also help establish a 24-hour international hot line to trade information on potential attacks on the national infrastructure and promote closer cross-border relationships between law enforcement agencies.

Also this week, members of the Council of Europe are meeting in Strasbourg, France, to create an international treaty to standardize Net crime prevention and prosecution.