Cyber attacks cost UK £27bn a year

Cyber crime costs the UK more than £27bn a year, an investigation has found. Attacks on computer systems, industrial espionage and theft of intellectual property costs businesses alone at least £21bn.

The Security minister Baroness Neville-Jones said the answer lay in private firms and the Government working together to disrupt criminal networks rather than prosecution. The Government and business leaders have met to work out an early-warning and advice system to beat cyber attacks.

Cyber crime costs citizens £3.1bn a year and the government £2.2bn a year, according to an inquiry by the cyber security experts Detica, published by the Cabinet Office.

Cyber attacks on the UK's information technology systems were identified in last year's Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) as one of the most serious threats to national security.