Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Comments

Submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Criminal Justice in the Graduate College of Bridgewater State University, 2015

Degree Program

Criminal Justice

Degree Type

Master of Science

Abstract

The Internet and its overwhelming possibilities and applications have changed the way individuals carry out many routine activities such as going to work or school, or socializing. Social networking sites such as Facebook are ideal settings for interacting with others, and unfortunately, are also ideal settings for committing cybercrimes. The purpose of this study is to investigate the occurrence of online offending against individuals, specifically harassment, stalking, impersonation, and sexting. Self-report surveys collected from a sample of 274 college students were examined using a negative binomial statistical analysis to determine possible relationships between risky online and offline lifestyles as well as social learning factors and the perpetration of cybercrime. The results indicate moderate support for the application of lifestyle-routine activity theory and social learning theory to cybercrime offending. Possible policy implications as well as suggestions for future research are discussed.

Committee/Advisor(s)

Kyung-shick Choi (chair)

Khadija Monk

Mitch Librett

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