APCC Chair, Dame Vera Baird QC said:
“These figures show that whilst there are no statistically significant changes to incidents of crime compared to last year, an extension to the coverage of the survey has helped to shine a light on the real extent of fraud on computer misuse offences.
“Experimental statistics show 3.6 million fraud and 2 million computer misuse offences, whilst data on frauds referred to the police show a rise of 3%. Other industry data on financial fraud, the vast bulk of which is unreported to the police, showed there were 1.9 million cases of frauds on UK-issued cards – an increase of 39%.
“Police and Crime Commissioners take fraud and digital crime very seriously indeed and are working closely alongside Chief Constables across the country and through the police reform and transformation programme to ensure that forces have the tools and resources to tackle these crimes and adapt to the challenges as they emerge.
“Improvements in crime recording practices and processes and willingness of victims to come forward and report offences are the main drivers behind an increase in sexual offences. The rise in violent crime, however, is a cause for concern with genuine increases in some of the higher harm categories of police recorded violence including homicide and knife crime.
“The debate about how we resource our police needs to continue, as financial resources are more likely to be further stretched than they are to be relaxed, and most of the straightforward opportunities to cut costs and improve efficiency have been used up.”
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The ONS statistical bulletin Crime in England and Wales: year ending Sept 2016 is available here.