Assessing the Physical, Psychological, and Behavioral Impact of Computer Crime Victimization

John Kane, National White Collar Crime Center
Ryan Brown, National White Collar Crime Center

This paper focuses on measuring behavioral and health outcomes experienced by victims of Internet-facilitated fraud as reported to the Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC), a cooperative initiative of the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). While social scientists and criminal justice practitioners have studied the impact of criminal victimization on subsequent behavioral and health outcomes, research has focused on the violent crime victim. Scant attention has been paid to the victims of white-collar crime, even though repercussions from their experiences can last for years. In a recent survey by the California Public Interest Research Group and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, over half of victims reported their cases as 'unresolved' after nearly four years; of those who had a successful resolution, the average life of a case was twenty-two months. This current study will gauge psychological, physical, and behavioral outcomes experienced by victims of a variety of 'electronic' white-collar crimes. The results will help practitioners to better understand victimization recovery patterns and the corresponding services that need to be afforded to this population of individuals.

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Updated 05/20/2006