CARY, N.C. — The Cary Town Council voted Thursday to put town police on the trail of cyber criminals.
Leaders allocated $230,000 for the department to boot up a cyber crime unit. Online sexual predators, ID thieves, drug traffickers and embezzlers are among the kinds of criminal that police say they will now be able to chase more effectively in cyber space than in real space.
Last year, Cary police investigated 480 computer crimes, some related to sexual predators and many more focusing on identity theft. With two new detectives for the unit, they hope to crack more cases.
"Within a week, we will start ordering the equipment and make internal moves," Chief Scott Cunningham said.
Officials think that having their own resources to put on criminals’ trails quickly will help them close more cases.
"It gives us the resources in house to deal with it. We use the SBI, CCBI. We need to do it internally and have a quicker turnaround on issues that come up," Mayor Ernie McAllister said.
The new unit also is a nod to how crime is likely to change, Cunningham said.
"There is a constant trend to go up. It really is proactive, to prevent problems," the chief said.