Faces behind the interface: who are the perpetrators and victims of cyberstalking?

Blake-Smith, Fiona (2013) Faces behind the interface: who are the perpetrators and victims of cyberstalking? MSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Abstract

    Stalking is a behaviour that has been widely researched. It is defined in statute, antistalking laws have been implemented and victim and perpetrator profiles have been proposed as have stalker typologies. In contrast, existing empirical research into cyberstalking, the term coined to define stalking-type behaviour using the internet, email and other such tools, has been relatively limited despite vast public consumption of technology. There are differing opinions as to whether cyberstalking is merely an extension of traditional stalking or is an entirely separate criminal behaviour and therefore who the key parties of cyberstalking are. This dissertation aims to demonstrate the key characteristics of cyberstalking perpetrators and victims by examining cyberstalking and cyberbullying incidents as presented by UK newspapers between 1999 and 2013 identified using Nexis®; to determine the uniqueness of cyberstalking as a crime. Quantitative analysis methods are used to examine key variables including; perpetrators’ and victims’ demographic details (e.g. gender, age, etc.). It is also used to understand the relationship between victim and perpetrator, the incidence of multiple victims and perpetrators, the technology used and the modus operandi and whether the cyberstalking moved offline. Findings include that females are more likely to be the victims of cyberstalking from male perpetrators. Half of perpetrators are known to the victim and of those only 9.2 percent are ex-intimate. In nearly a third of cases there are multiple perpetrators and in 14 percent of cases there are multiple victims. In 8 percent of cases the cyberstalking spills over into the real world with an incident occurring offline. Findings are discussed with respect to existing research and recommendations for future research are offered.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2014 11:16
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 12:34
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/14483

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