The proposed £5.3 million national e-crime police unit has been given the go-ahead by the government.

The news comes seven months after a proposal was submitted by the Metropolitan Police.

The proposal is for the unit to have 50 police officers highly trained in internet policing. It will investigate and fight online crime, ranging from small advanced fee fraud to child abuse and terrorist threats.

It is not yet known whether the government has committed all the funding that was proposed.

Detective Superintendent Charlie McMurdie, who has led the campaign for an e-crime unit, told CIO sister title Computerworld UK: “We’re encouraged by the positive support of the national e-crime unit. We’re going to work closely with partners to make sure we provide the appropriate e-crime response.”

It is unclear whether the unit would help the government achieve its aim, reported today, of creating a national database of phone calls and emails. But the IT industry has reacted with some concern over the database's security.

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