The Metropolitan Police have arrested 97 people in connection with ticketing, accommodation, and online fraud in relation to the Olympics due to begin in London in July.
Special task force Operation Podium
Scotland Yard’s Operation Podium is a special task force set up to prevent criminal activity by keeping on top of intelligence concerning organised gangs. The Home Secretary, Theresa May has commented on the possibility of internet crime whereby hackers may attempt to disrupt Olympic sponsors’ websites.
She has said, “We are aware of the threat from so-called ‘hacktivist’ groups,” and has confirmed that both the Government and private sector are working towards increased security against attacks from hackers.
Scotland Yard has confirmed that the investment in overall security for the Olympic Games to date is £475m.
Criminals using “London 2012” logo to commit fraud
The Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) has recently published information advising that the most common frauds associated with the Games are the ‘London 2012’ logo appearing in mass marketing frauds, hoax websites, e-mail scams. Fraudsters have also falsely offered employment and set up lotteries and prize draws under the auspices of fundraising for the event.
SOCA reports that a number of companies have been registered with a direct link to the London 2012 brand. Domain names which include “2012” have also been registered potentially. SOCA believes that this may be with a view to facilitate fraud.
Prevention through awareness
The official Olympic committee’s website has all the information the public needs to know about London 2012, including ticketing, employment and merchandise.
For accommodation in London, visitors are advised to book through well-established organisations such as Visit Britain.
Please note that Action Fraud cannot be responsible for the content of external websites.
The public are strongly advised not to purchase merchandise online from websites that offer too good to be true deals on products and services purportedly linked to the Olympics.
If you or anyone you know experience fraud, report it to Action Fraud.