The International Criminal Police Organization is making serious efforts to educate its police force in the virtual realm.
Interpol Secretary General Jurgen Stock believes that crime is becoming far more sophisticated than ever before. Thus, the agency needs to move with the times in order to fulfill its role.
Mr Stock said: “Criminals are sophisticated and professional in very quickly adapting to any new technological tool that is available to commit crime.”
“We need to sufficiently respond to that. Sometimes lawmakers, police, and our societies are running a little bit behind.”
At present, Interpol is using a secure virtual reality environment for training, collaboration and investigation. However, it appears that the organisation is taking the metaverse and its potential utility very seriously now.
Indeed, the environment they are working with can only be accessed through secure servers, and enables police officers to simulate crime scenarios in virtual reality.
Defining metaverse crime
Crimes in the metaverse are problematic. For example, certain crimes, like sexual harassment, are very clear in the real world. Yet, a crime like this may be more challenging to define in the virtual realm.
Dr Madan Oberoi, Interpol’s executive director of technology and innovation is aware of these difficulties. However, he also believes that raising awareness about the metaverse is one of the biggest challenges they face.
He said: “My typically used example is that if you have to save a drowning person, you need to know swimming.”
“Similarly, if law enforcement is interested to help people who have been hurt in the metaverse, they need to know about the metaverse.
“And that is one of our objectives – to make sure law enforcement personnel start using the metaverse and they become aware.
International effort to tackle crime
Interpol is currently in 195 different countries. Moreover, cybercrime is international by nature. Therefore, Interpol’s role in solving cyber crimes is significant.
Mr Stock continued: “This is why Interpol is so important, because only national cyber-crime does not exist – almost all of the cases have an international dimension.”
“That makes the role of Interpol, almost 100 years after its creation, so critical in today’s world. Because no country can fight these types of crime in isolation.”