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Using Luring Communication Theory to Analyze the Behavior of Online Sexual Offenders

Using Luring Communication Theory to Analyze the Behavior of Online Sexual Offenders
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Author(s): Charles R. Crowell (University of Notre Dame, USA), Jamie Segerson (University of Notre Dame, USA), Mitchell D. Kajzer (University of Notre Dame, USA), Michael Villano (University of Notre Dame, USA), Julaine Zenk (University of Notre Dame, USA), Veronica Wegner (University of Notre Dame, USA) and Monica M. Bell (University of Notre Dame, USA)
Copyright: 2020
Pages: 18
Source title: Encyclopedia of Criminal Activities and the Deep Web
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9715-5.ch037

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Abstract

Use of the internet by sexual offenders to communicate with children and instigate sexual relationships is an ever-increasing problem that threatens the safety and wellbeing of these victims. The present study was the first of its kind to investigate the differences between contact- and fantasy-driven offenders in terms of their use of luring communications. Seventy-three chat transcripts of conversations between offenders and undercover investigators posing as children (pseudo-children) were analyzed and coded for luring communication strategies. Results indicated that contact-driven offenders made significantly more use of the main luring steps of isolation and approach as well as the sub-steps of mental isolation, physical isolation, verbal lead ins, and physical contact. Fantasy-driven offenders made more use of the main luring step of grooming as well as the sub-step of communicative desensitization. The main implications of these findings for identification of online sexual offenders were discussed.

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