New Interpol complex in Singapore to boost fight against cyber crime

SINGAPORE - A new Interpol centre to be opened in Singapore next year will strengthen global efforts to fight increasingly tech-savvy international criminals, officials said Tuesday.

The Interpol Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI) will be "dedicated to fighting cyber crime", the global police organisation's secretary general Ronald Noble said in a speech at the centre's new building.

Noble and other senior Interpol officials attended the handover ceremony of the building from Singapore to the organisation, based in the French city of Lyon.

"We also believe that providing training to our member countries' police forces in the face of new age criminalities must constitute a core component of the IGCI," Noble said.

The Singapore complex will be officially opened in April next year and will complement the agency's headquarters. 

A digital crimes centre will "support member countries' operations by providing law enforcement agencies with advanced tools and techniques to counter the latest cybercrime trends," said S. Iswaran, Singapore's second minister for home affairs.

"It will also facilitate information-sharing with the private sector, which could have critical information that can strengthen efforts and actions against cybercrime," he added.

Singapore, Southeast Asia's financial capital, last month announced new measures to strengthen cyber security to prevent a recurrence of attacks on government websites including those of its president and prime minister.

Globally, insidious email scams known as phishing cost organisations $5.9 billion in losses in 2013, according to a report by US-based computer security firm RSA.

Malicious mobile apps, money-laundering through virtual currencies and malware attacks are the three top cybercrime trends, RSA said.