RESEARCH TITLE: Bio-crime. Are we prepared for it?
Abstract: The challenge of cybersecurity persists since the launch of the internet and the proliferation of internet connected devices, with new and concerning opportunities for criminals. The 2019 UK Home Office report on future technology trends in security identified concerns with synthetic biology, listing issues associated with designer psychoactive drugs, pervasive microbiome and genetic engineering by amateurs as examples of the future challenge of “Bio-crime.” The relationship between the cyber space, life sciences and social sciences, can be summarised as ‘cyberbiosecurity’ and includes the technical and the human factors, address the 4P’s developed by the National Security Strategy; “to ‘prevent’, ‘pursue’ cyber-criminals, ‘protect’ systems and ‘prepare’ to respond to new forms of cybercrime” (UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Council research theme: “Human Dimensions of Cyber Security”). In this project a crime science lens is used to identify new forms of offending that might be facilitated by synthetic biology and related biotechnology with the aim of developing informed strategies to address them.