A third of businesses are failing to report information security crimes and breaches, according to the latest research by Infosecurity Europe.

Yet the study, which sought the views of 285 companies plus a panel of 20 chief security officers (CSOs), found that organisations are subject to attempted e-crime every day.

“From my experience as a media lawyer, reporting crime to the police is a double edged sword as invariably the press have found out about the incident within 24 hours of reporting it to the police, creating a real PR risk,” explains media lawyer Jonathan Coad from Swan Turton.

However, Tony Neate, managing director of GetSafeOnline, argues that in order to gauge the true extent of the problem cybercrime must be reported.

“This can only be measured if we report incidents when they occur,” he said. “Without collating the scale of the e-crime problem, we will never truly be aware of the cost to society at large and the measures that need to be put in place to fight it.”

Phillip Virgo, secretary general of EURIM, added: “The time has come to respond to the needs of the customer for security tools they can understand, realistic advice, guidance and support on how to use them and for reporting systems that will route their enquiry to someone who will respond - be it law enforcement or technical support.”