Scripting the crime commission process in the illicit online prescription drug trade

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Leontiadis, N 

This paper considers the processes in the illicit online prescription drug trade, namely search-redirection attacks and the operation of unlicensed pharmacies using crime script analysis. Empirical data have been used to describe the salient elements of the online criminal infrastructures and associated monetization paths enabling criminal profitability. This analysis reveals the existence of structural chokepoints: components of online criminal operations being limited in number, and critical for the operations’ profitability. Consequently, interventions targeting such components can reduce the opportunities and incentives to engage in online crime through an increase in criminal operational costs, and in the risk of apprehension.

Online prescription drug trade, Illicit online pharmacies, Search-redirection attacks, Crime script analysis, Situational crime prevention
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Journal of Cybersecurity
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Oxford University Press (OUP)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/M020320/1)
This work was supported by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate, Cyber Security Division (DHSS&T/CSD) Broad Agency Announcement 11.02; the Government of Australia; and SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific [contract number N66001-13-C-0131]. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the authors and do not reflect those of the aforementioned agencies.