Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Criminal Justice


Criminal Justice

First Reader/Committee Chair

Bichler, Gisela


This project examines the protection methods suggested by hackers to guard against online victimization through the lens of Situation Crime Prevention. Data were collected from 85 webpages representing three categories of electronic communications: forums, blogs, and fan pages. The goal of this project was to identify which of the 25 opportunity reduction techniques the hacking community recommend most often, as well as, what level of expertise was associated with the suggested security measures. Results indicate that the technique most recommended by the hacking community was to remove targets with 27% of the total codings. From the results three themes were found: (1) most recommendations are such that implementing the strategies would serve to protect against opportunistic, low-skilled attacks; (2) most recommendations could be considered routine precautions, that when bundled, would secure most people against cyber-theft; and finally, (3) the Situational Crime Prevention framework was not fully realized because much of cyber-theft does not involve direct victim-perpetrator interactions. From these three themes policy recommendation and limitations are presented as well as avenues for future research.