The Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS)

The Center for Education and Research in
Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS)

Effects of Anonymity, Pre-Employment Integrity and Antisocial Behavior on Self-Reported Cyber Crime Engagement: An Exploratory Study


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Ibrahim M. Baggili

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CERIAS TR 2009-31

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A key issue facing today’s society is the increase in cyber crimes. Cyber crimes pose threats to nations, organizations and individuals across the globe. Much of the research in cyber crime has risen from computer science-centric programs and little experimental research has been performed on the psychology of cyber crime. This has caused a knowledge gap in the study of cyber crime. To this end, this dissertation focuses on understanding psychological concepts related to cyber crime. Through an experimental design, participants were randomly assigned to three groups with varying degrees of anonymity. After each treatment, participants were asked to self-report their cyber crime engagement, antisocial behavior and pre-employment integrity. Results indicated that the anonymity manipulation had a main effect on self-reported cyber crime engagement. The results also showed that there is a statistically significant positive relationship between self-reported antisocial behaviors and cyber crime engagement, and a statistically significant negative relationship between self-reported cyber crime engagement and pre- employment integrity. Suggestions for future research are also discussed.




2009 – 7 – 12

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