Alistair Maclean

Social media, tattoos expose public servants to organised crime

Public sector agencies are not doing enough to address the risk of employees being targeted by organised crime groups, Victoria's Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission warns. The threat of the exploitation of public servants is a significant risk to the Victorian public sector and many bodies lack an awareness of the threat, IBAC CEO Alistair Maclean warned with the release of an IBAC report on the topic: "Most public sector bodies hold information or commodities that criminal groups can use to help them commit crimes and they are willing to go to great lengths to get what they want. "There is increasing evidence of people involved in criminal activity attempting to use public servants who have access to sensitive or valuable information in order to further their illegal activities or avoid detection." IBAC identified four strategies organised criminals were using to target public sector workers: Pre-existing relationships, such as family, friendships or cultural ties; Social media; Interest in tattoos, fitness culture, bodybuilding and martial arts; and Illicit drug use and the misuse of prescription medication. Arguing that members of the public were more likely to develop incidental associations with organised crime through an interest in tattoos, fitness, bodybuilding and martial arts, the report noted that such links allowed crime groups to "actively screen" public servants. Read More