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How Might Crime-Scripts Be Used to Support the Understanding and Policing of Cloud Crime?



Crime scripts are becoming an increasingly popular method for understanding crime by turning a crime from a static event into a process, whereby every phase of the crime is scripted. It is based on the work relating to cognitive scripts and rational-choice theory. With the exponential growth of cyber-crime, and more specifically cloud-crime, policing/law enforcement agencies are struggling with the amount of reported cyber-crime. This paper argues that crime scripts are the most effective way forward in terms of helping understand the behaviour of the criminal during the crime itself. They act as a common language between different stakeholders, focusing attention and resources on the key phases of a crime. More importantly, they shine a light on the psychological element of a crime over the more technical cyber-related elements. The paper concludes with an example of what a cloud-crime script might look like, asking future research to better understand: (i) cloud criminal fantasy development; (ii) the online cultures around cloud crime; (iii) how the idea of digital-drift affects crime scripts, and; (iv) to improve on the work by Ekblom and Gill in improving crime scripts.


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