This paper explores the various challenges associated with policing cybercrime, arguing that a failure to improve law enforcement responses to cybercrime may negatively impact their institutional legitimacy as reliable first responders. Further, the paper makes preliminary links between cybercrime and the paradigm of evidence-based policing (EBP), providing suggestions on how the paradigm can assist, develop, and improve a myriad of factors associated with policing cybercrime.Design/methodology/approachThree examples of prominent cybercrime incidents will be explored under the lens of institutional theory: the cyberextortion of Amanda Todd; the hacking of Ashley Madison; and the 2013 Target data breach.FindingsEBP approaches to cybercrime can improve the effectiveness of existing and future approaches to cybercrime training, recruitment, as well as officers' preparedness and awareness of cybercrime.Research limitations/implicationsFuture research will benefit from determining what types of training work at the local, state/provincial, and federal level, as well as evaluating both current and new cybercrime policing programs and strategies.Practical implicationsEBP approaches to cybercrime have the potential to improve police responses to cybercrime calls for service, save police resources, improve police–public relations during calls for service, and improve police legitimacy.Originality/valueThis paper links cybercrime policing to the paradigm of EBP, highlighting the need for evaluating and implementing effective evidence-based approaches to policing cybercrime.
Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 6, 2020
Keywords: Policing; Institutional theory; Police legitimacy; Cybercrime; Evidence-based policing
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