Community groups across Scotland will share a £500,000 funding pot from government to tackle the rise in cybercrime.

Projects providing practical help to prevent people being targeted by online crime will benefit from the cash.

Organisations including Scottish Union Learning and Community Enterprise will use the money to provide workshops aimed at tackling scams and internet safety, deliver training to upskill under-represented groups into careers within cybersecurity and provide digital advice in different languages.

The projects will be targeted at specific groups, including disabled people and those with specific learning needs, minority ethnic groups, people living in areas of social deprivation or in rural or remote communities and those for whom English is not their first language.

Since 2019- 20 cyber crimes (crimes committed using the internet) have risen with an estimated 14,890 cyber-crimes recorded by Police Scotland in in 2022-23 almost twice the level in 2019-20 (7,710).

This £500,000 fund is part of £1.16 million invested by the Scottish Government in 2023-24 to improve preparedness to withstand, defend against, manage, and recover quickly from cyber incidents.

Angela Constance, justice and home affairs secretary, said: “Cybercrime such as fraud and data theft can have a devastating impact on people, communities and businesses. 

“The Scottish Government is committed to building cyber resilience within all our communities and this funding will enable many more people across the country keep themselves safe and secure when going online by supporting them to gain practical knowledge and skills to recognise and avoid cyber-attacks.

“We will also continue to work closely with Police Scotland and the National Cyber Security Centre to ensure Scotland’s public sector is resilient to cyber threats.“