Academic institutions house enormous amounts of critical information from social security numbers of students to proprietary research data. Thus, maintaining up to date cybersecurity practices to protect academic institutions’ information and facilities against cyber-perpetrators has become a top priority. The purpose of this study is to assess common cybersecurity measures through a situational crime prevention (SCP) theoretical framework. Using a national data set of academic institutions in the United States, this study investigates the link between common cybersecurity measures, crime prevention activities, and cybercrimes. By focusing on the conceptualization of cybersecurity measures as SCP techniques, this study also offers the SCP approach as a framework by which universities can seek to reduce incidents of cybercrime through the design, maintenance, and use of the built environment in the digital realm. Implications for theory, research and practice are discussed.

Note on the Author(s)

Sinchul Back, PhD, The University of Scranton, U.S.A.

Jennifer LaPrade, Ph.D., Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Missouri State University, 901 S. National Ave., Springfield, MO, 65897, U.S.A. Email: jlaprade@missouristate.edu