Using digital open source and crowdsourced data in studies of deviance and crime

Rajeev V. Gundur, Mark Berry, Dean Taodang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

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As the internet has become cheaper, faster, and more widely used, the amount of data generated by people has increased exponentially. Much of the data is provided by users’ activities, often mundane tasks, like making purchases, engaging in exercise routines, and consuming streaming content. In some cases, these tasks are leveraged by criminal actors; in others, these tasks include criminal activities. Using data to explore patterns of offending and victimization is critical to understanding crime trends in the digital age. This chapter explores how researchers have used open source data collection techniques and have solicited data using crowdsourcing to develop viable data sets to explore social scientific enquiries. These techniques illustrate that it is increasingly possible to gather and solicit information and analytical help to explore deviance, victimization, social taboos, and behaviors that are often kept out of public view but nonetheless impact society.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearching Cybercrimes
Subtitle of host publicationMethodologies, Ethics, and Critical Approaches
EditorsAnita Lavorgna, Thomas Holt
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9783030748371
ISBN (Print)9783030748364
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 15 Jan 2021


  • open source
  • data collection
  • social science
  • crowdsourcing
  • digital methods


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