Osborne is set to double cyber security spending despite many cuts to other departments

Osborne doubles cyber-security funding

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, is expected to announce that he will double spending on UK cyber-security following reports that Islamic State (ISIL) militants are trying to develop the capability to launch ‘deadly cyber attacks’.

Under the new plans, UK spending on cybercrime will rise to £1.9bn a year by 2020.

"ISIL are already using the Internet for hideous propaganda purposes; for radicalisation, for operational planning too," Osborne will say in a forthcoming speech at GCHQ.

"They have not been able to use it to kill people yet by attacking our infrastructure through cyber-attack, but we know they want it and are doing their best to build it."

The sizable funding increase comes amid numerous budgets cuts in other departments.

"It is right that we choose to invest in our cyber defences even at a time when we must cut other budgets," he said. "The Internet represents a critical axis of potential vulnerability."

"The stakes could hardly be higher - if our electricity supply, or our air traffic control, or our hospitals were successfully attacked online, the impact could be measured not just in terms of economic damage but of lives lost."

The announcement comes just after devastating attacks in Paris which left over 100 people dead and have been attributed to ISIL.

It is thought that terrorists involved in the attacks may have been using a PlayStation 4  games console to communicate with encrypted messages.

However, Osborne said the decision to boost cyber-security funding was made before the attacks took place.

Meanwhile, Anonymous, the loosely affiliated network of hackers, has announced they will launch their own attacks against ISIL.

A man wearing a Guy Fawkes mask, which is consistently worn by members of the group, appeared on a video posted to YouTube and said the Islamic State militants who claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks were "vermin" and Anonymous would hunt them down.

"These attacks cannot remain unpunished," the man said, speaking in French.

"We are going to launch the biggest operation ever against you. Expect many cyber-attacks. War has been declared. Get ready. We don't forgive and we don't forget."

The video has racked up over five million views since it was posted on Saturday.

The group says it has identified more than 39,000 suspected ISIL profiles and reported them to Twitter. It claims to have had more than 25,000 of these accounts suspended, while nearly 14,000 more on the targeted list remain active.

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