skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 201381 Find in a Library
Title: e-Crime Solutions and Crime Displacement
Author(s): Russell G. Smith; Nicholas Wolanin; Glenn Worthington
Corporate Author: Australian Institute of Criminology
Date Published: January 2003
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: Australian Institute of Criminology
Canberra ACT, 2601, Australia
Publication Number: ISBN 0 642 24287 9
Sale Source: Australian Institute of Criminology
GPO Box 2944
Canberra ACT, 2601,
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This document discusses the potential effects arising from crime prevention measures to reduce electronic crime.
Abstract: There are six ways in which criminal activity might be displaced following situational crime prevention measures: displacement of crime to other locations (spatial); to other times or occasions (temporal); to softer targets (target); through different modus operandi (tactical); to other types of crime (offense); and to other perpetrators (perpetrator). Displacement can take place not only as a direct consequence of the introduction of some crime prevention measure, but also through the creation of new opportunities for crime to be committed. In the case of electronic crime, offenders will target victims in jurisdictions that have lower levels of networked security; or target victims in jurisdictions that have the lowest criminal penalties for computer crimes. Temporal displacement is unlikely to occur unless some online services are only available during certain hours. Offenders may target victims in other countries at times when it is impossible for personal telephone verification checks to be undertaken; or may choose to operate during times of high volume transaction traffic. In targeting softer targets, offenders may choose mobile messaging devices or laptop computers with less security features, or small businesses or individuals that have inadequate security precautions in place. With the development of electronic security systems, offenders may employ different methods to achieve their ends, such as bribing staff to disclose security procedures and stealing hardware to compromise security measures. Offense displacement is one of the more worrying consequences of target hardening, as the likely change would be away from soft economic crimes to more violent offenses. Because of the presence of networked information sources among computer criminals, there will be a ready supply of new computer criminals that can take the place of any that are removed by official action. Well-designed and targeted research needs to be undertaken to assess the extent to which the various forms of potential displacement actually occur. Policymakers need to consider the socio-political implications of potential displacement effects. 1 table, 21 references
Main Term(s): Computer crime prevention measures; Crime displacement
Index Term(s): Computer facility security; Computer privacy and security; Crime Control Programs; Crime patterns; Crime prevention measures; Crime specific countermeasures; Data security
Note: Australian Institute of Criminology Trends & Issues in Crime and Criminal Justice, No. 243
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.