Independence: Cybercrime warning for ‘Yes’ vote

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A FORMER FBI agent has warned Scotland will be more vulnerable to cybercrime if it becomes independent.

Ed Gibson worked on terrorism, kidnapping and cybercrime cases at the US Embassy from 2000 to 2005.

He said an independent Scotland’s new intelligence organisations would be inferior to the current UK institutions.

Earlier this year, deputy first minister Nicola Sturgeon told MPs an independent Scotland would have its own intelligence agency while working with MI5 and MI6.

But Home Secretary Theresa May said Scotland’s own spies would not be guaranteed access to intelligence.

Mr Gibson, now a director of global consulting firm Alvarez and Marsal, said an independent Scotland would be exposed if information was not shared by spies south of the Border.

He said Ms May’s warning confirmed Scotland could be vulnerable: “She has confirmed my point.

“If there is a split of England and Wales from Scotland there are certain areas of criminality that for a certain time may suffer.”

Cybercrime is said to cost Scottish businesses £5 billion a year.

Mr Gibson, who was closely involved in the case of Scottish hacker Gary McKinnon, questioned whether a Scottish intelligence service would be as effective as MI5.