Jonathan Lusthaus on the Business of Cybercrime

Centre Research Associate Jonathan Lusthaus discussed his in-depth work on the different aspects of cybercrime on 20 January 2019. His presentation synthesized the results of his fieldwork in around twenty countries in seven years, taking an exploratory approach to gain knowledge regarding this risky yet fascinating sector. Jonathan started his presentation by discussing the emergence and history of cybercrime, arguing that the phenomenon is as old as the proliferation of cyberspace. In providing the audience with insightful details of his study, he demonstrated that cybercrime is becoming more organized over time and is going through a process that is akin to industrialization and centralization. The results of his research, he argued, show that much of the literature on sociology and human organization can be applied on this field, and that scholars do not need to treat cybercrime and its organization as an entirely novel subject. Jonathan ended his presentation by encouraging the audience to critically think about the relationship between newer forms of crime, particularly cybercrime, with traditional and preexisting ones. 

Jonathan is Director of The Human Cybercriminal Project in the Department of Sociology, a Research Associate at the Centre for Technology and Global Affairs, and a Research Fellow at Nuffield College, University of Oxford. He recently completed a seven-year global study on the organization of cybercrime published by Harvard University Press as Industry of Anonymity: Inside the Business of Cybercrime.