Title — Using financial intelligence to target online fraud victimisation: applying a tertiary prevention perspective
Abstract: It is well established that policing in an online environment is fraught with challenges. To combat losses attributed to online fraud, Australia has seen the emergence of a victim-oriented approach, which uses financial intelligence to identify potential victims and deliberately intervenes through the sending of a letter. This approach predominantly targets victims of advance fee fraud and romance fraud who are sending money to West African countries. The current article presents three Australian case studies: Project Sunbird (West Australian Police and West Australian Department of Commerce); Operation Disrepair (South Australian Police); and the National Scams Disruption Project (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission). The article locates these cases within existing theory on crime prevention, using available data to document initial positive outcomes. Overall, this article supports the use of a victim-oriented tertiary approach to online fraud, and advocates its potential to reduce both repeat victimisation and the harm incurred through online fraud.
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