File on 4Author: BBC Radio 4
29 Sep 2021

File on 4

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Award-winning current affairs documentary series investigating major issues at home and abroad

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    Occupational Hazard: The bus drivers who died from Covid

    During the pandemic, it’s been one of the most dangerous occupations in the land, with a death rate similar to that of frontline nurses. Sixty London bus drivers have died of Covid-19, and yet the authorities still have little explanation as to why the disease spread among them in such deadly fashion. Families of the deceased say it was due to poor safety standards and the slow introduction of protective measures. Transport for London say they were just following government guidance. But with bus drivers becoming more vociferous and the death rate too high to ignore, BBC File on 4 tries to uncover the truth behind the shocking statistics. The programme hears from bus drivers across the capital who describe what was really happening on the ground, as well as the families of the deceased, and a TfL insider who alleges systemic problems with health and safety and says a Royal Commission is now needed to get to the bottom of what happened. Reporter: Paul Kenyon Producer: Annabel Deas Editor: Carl Johnston

  • Posted on 28 Sep 2021

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    Mental Health Profiteers

    Mental health profiteers: The dark world of online anxiety ‘cures’. Jane Deith and Jordan Dunbar investigate the rogue operators exploiting the long wait for mental health services on the NHS. The explosion in unregulated online recovery programmes has led to claims of people paying thousands of pounds for treatment by unqualified practitioners which has made their anxiety worse – not better. File on 4 investigates one company guaranteeing to cure anxiety in children. And we ask – why isn’t the law protecting people who seek help online?

  • Posted on 21 Sep 2021

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    Hush Money: the Rise and Fall of an International Fraudster

    File on 4 reveals the inside story of Ramon Abbas, one of a new breed of prolific global cyber fraudsters. As Abbas awaits sentencing in the US for money-laundering, File on 4 asks is enough being done to protect us from online criminals operating across international borders. Snared by the FBI in 2020, Abbas’ is better known as Instagram influencer Hushpuppi, who flaunted a life of designer clothes, private jets and penthouse apartments to millions of followers. Little did they know that his lavish lifestyle was funded through a complex web of cyber-heists. He even had a hand in an audacious attempt to steal £100 million from a Premier League Football Club. Most cyber-criminals remain nameless, faceless, anonymous and all but untraceable. Now, File on 4 unmasks Ramon Abbas, revealing a complicated, sometimes ruthless character driven by a thirst for wealth and celebrity status. In addition, we expose the inner workings of a clandestine operation that earned him a reputation as the world’s most high-profile money-launderer. Reporters: Paul Connolly and Princess Abumere Producer: Helen Clifton Editor: Maggie Latham

  • Posted on 14 Sep 2021

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    Tackling Online Abuse in Football

    When three black England footballers missed penalties in the Euro 2020 football final they were bombarded with online racist abuse. The Football Association condemned the ‘offensive and racist’ messages saying it was ‘appalled’ and would do everything it could to assist Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka. File on 4 examines what many describe as institutional racism within the game and amongst supporters and asks what, if anything, is being done to stop it from happening? With access to new analysis charting the peaks and flows of online abuse, the programme explores who is really behind some of the most egregious comments. Arrests have been made in the wake of the Euro 2020 game but what long-term measures are in place to eradicate this poisonous behaviour which has spread from the terraces to online platforms with little in place to stop it. Reporter: Athar Ahmad Producer: Mick Tucker Editor: Carl Johnston

  • Posted on 07 Sep 2021

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    Held to Ransom

    The extraordinary story of a UK schools group which took on a cyber ransomware gang. The Harris Federation seems an unlikely target for ransomware criminals but it found itself at the centre of a cyber attack by anonymous hackers. With its servers down and a ransom demand of nearly £3 million, school leaders had to decide quickly whether to pay or suffer the consequences. File on 4 has unique access to the extraordinary negotiations that took place behind the scenes, involving an Israeli security company and Russian hackers. More British institutions are being hit by ransomware gangs than ever before, from multi-national corporations to health care trusts and even schools. The attackers hack into an organisation's computer system, encrypt the data and demand a ransom to get it back. Increasingly, they also threaten to publish sensitive information if no payment is made. It's known as double extortion. The former head of the National Cyber Security Centre tells File on 4 that the government needs to intervene as a matter of urgency, and make it illegal to pay ransomware gangs. Presenter: Paul Kenyon Producer: Paul Grant Editor: Nicola Addyman

  • Posted on 13 Jul 2021

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