A new reservist police force could be created as a way of tackling the growing problem of cyber crime, one expert has said.
In an interview with the Telegraph, president of the Police Superintendents' Association Paul Griffiths said recruiting expert talent can be a problem at present, since the best individuals are often attracted by big tech firms and their large salaries.
However, he suggested that creating a new volunteer police force would allow forces to have the most elite candidates on board to tackle cyber issues whenever they are needed.
Under Mr Griffiths' proposals, individuals would volunteer and then their employers would agree to release them for set periods each year, with 200 hours suggested as a benchmark.
They would not only receive their normal wage, but also qualify for police pay in line with regular officers. Each person would need to pass the same security clearance as traditional serving officers.
"We can't afford to pay for the experience we need to keep pace with technology. We shouldn't be ashamed about it, nor should we hide from it. Without the power to pay for the skills we need, it's time to ask communities for help," Mr Griffiths concluded.
Last year, a national campaign to recruit 20,000 new police officers was launched. A first wave of 6,000 staff will be shared among England and Wales's 43 forces, with £750 million allocated for recruitment in 2020-21.