A New Report Reveals London Has The Highest Rate Of Cybercrime In The UK

A new study into cybercrime reveals the most common types of cybercrime across the UK and the areas with the highest rates. The data shows a 19.1% increase in overall UK cybercrime levels between January 2020 and January 2021. 

During the coronavirus pandemic, the UK has seen a cybercrime increase of 19.1%. ESET, a global leader in cybersecurity, has conducted a study to reveal the UK areas with the highest rates of cybercrime, the areas where cybercrime is rising most rapidly and the most common types of cybercrime. 

The UK areas with the highest rate of cybercrime: 

Rank Police Force Total Number of Cybercrimes Population (2019) Cybercrimes per 100,000 people 
Metropolitan 5,934 8,952,300 66.3 
Hertfordshire 749 1,189,500 63.0 
Wiltshire 425 722,200 58.8 
Kent 1,094 1,860,100 58.8 
Surrey 698 1,196,200 58.4 
Dorset 444 773,800 57.4 
Cheshire 605 1,066,600 56.7 
Warwickshire 320 577,900 55.4 
Thames Valley 1,333 2,420,000 55.1 
10 Hampshire 1,062 1,991,700 53.3 

According to the data, London is the worst place in the UK for cybercrime, with 66.3 in every 100,000 people falling victim last year, totalling 5,934 cybercrime attacks amongst its 8,952,300 population in 2020 alone. 

Hertfordshire takes second place with 63 per 100,000 people falling victim to cybercrimes. There were 749 cybercrime attacks in 2020 across a population of 1,189,500. 

Wiltshire and Kent both come in at third with 58.8 per 100,000 people becoming victims of cybercrime in both areas in 2020. 

The UK areas with the biggest increase in cybercrime: 

Rank Area Cybercrimes reported in Jan 2020 Cybercrimes reported in Jan 2021 YoY Increase YoY Increase (%) 
Police Scotland 27 18 200.0% 
Cheshire 34 57 23 67.6% 
Surrey 34 56 22 64.7% 
Wiltshire 26 42 16 61.5% 
Cumbria 12 18 50.0% 
Gwent 12 50.0% 
Lincolnshire 26 38 12 46.2% 
North Yorkshire 24 33 11 45.8% 
Cambridgeshire 25 35 10 40.0% 
10 PSNI 30 41 11 36.7% 

The biggest jump in cybercrime was seen by Police Scotland, which recorded a huge 200% increase from January 2020 to January 2021. Coming in second is Cheshire, which saw a 67.6% increase – followed closely by Surrey, with a 64.7% increase in reported cybercrime. 

The UK Cybercrime Report found around three-quarters of reported cybercrimes in the UK fell under ‘hacking’, with just under a quarter involving the installation of computer viruses, malware and spyware. 

Commenting on the study Jake Moore, Cybersecurity Specialist at ESET, said: “What is initially apparent is that there has been a nationwide increase and cybercriminals will pursue the data rather than target people specifically. However, knowledge is the key to reducing cybercrime and where this data has highlighted inevitable increases, it may suggest those areas are lacking in cybersecurity awareness and a focus on education is now necessary.” 

You can view the full research on Cybercrime Cities at the ESET website. If you mention the research, please do link to the report on Cybercrime Cities as a reference.