BOLTON Council could be putting residents at risk of cyber fraud, new research has found.

Cloud data intelligence company OnDMARC warned that the vast majority of North West councils ‘may be inadvertently exposing their citizens to the threat of email fraudsters’ by not having implemented proper email authentication protocol.

The Government-backed DMARC system helps stop email ‘spoofing’, in which scammers masquerade as a legitimate source.

Bolton Council said it is planning to deploy the system and other measures.

A council spokesman said: “The council places the utmost importance on email security and has developed a plan for the deployment of DMARC linked to the migration of the secure Government e-mail service.

“DMARC is just one method of protection against email address spoofing, which provides limited protection from the multiple cyber threats that endanger local authorities. We are therefore implementing a multi-layered approach to securing email.”