Digital Crime: Space Transition Theory And Social Learning Theory

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Introduction

When it comes to digital crimes, various methods are used to commit such acts. These

include: Hacking, malicious software as well as cyber stalking, to name a few takes place day in

and day out. The names that are attached to these crimes in fact explains the what and now, the

why has to be explained. In this body of work however, it will be discussed theories surrounding

digital crimes. Space Transition Theory and Social Learning Theory will provide detail and

insight as to the why factor: why was the crime committed, the rationale of the response, how it

relates to crime in general. Routine Activity Theory will also be explained and how it correlates

to digital crime as well as non-digital crime.

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(Jaishankar, 2007) More often then we

care to admit, people behave differently when they are in public versus when they are in the

confinement of their own home or office. This theory argues that individuals who repress the

urge to commit criminal acts end up performing them online due to the anonymity and because it

would not be something they would do in public due to who they are or their status in the

community. According to Jaishankar, in this theory individuals will more likely commit crimes

with complete strangers or someone in the same group or association and even go as far as

committing these crimes together. Another rationale behind the Space Transition Theory is due

to lack of deterrence and identity flexibility. In deterrence, individuals will weigh the pros and

the cons and eventually not commit an act because the consequences outweigh the rewards, in

cyberspace and in Space Transition Theory, this does not exist because the fact that there is a

higher possibility of not getting caught outweighs the consequence.

Social Learning Theory Environments and social status normally becomes a prelude to how
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Reinforcement can come in the form

of praises, money, approval and even pleasure. Beliefs Favorable in Crime can be taught from

one person to another. An individual can provide approval for the commitment of certain acts

that include gambling, doing drugs and petty theft. Once the approval is given, justification of

the act follows and the person is taught that it is acceptable to do this because and a number of

reasons are given. Once the person feels justified in committing crimes, that becomes a core

value for the person. Imitation of Criminal Models comes into play because it comes from what

is seen. Crossman writes that this happens especially if you admire the person and want to

emulate them in every way possible. They are more likely to commit a crime because they have

witnessed their “hero” doing so.

Routine Activities Theory

Most of us have a routine when we wake up in the morning. Get out of

bed, turn on CNN or take a shower, or pray, or even let the dog out and start our day. The same

way we have a routine in our walking life, we have one in cyberspace too. In Routine

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