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How to Stop Cybercriminals

November 13, 2023

Alain Claude Tambe Ebot, PhD, Paul H. Chook Department of Information Systems and Statistics

Have you ever been the victim of advance fee fraud? Someone offers you goods or services through the internet and convinces you to pay upfront, strings you along for a while, but ultimately doesn’t deliver. If this has happened to you, don’t be embarrassedyou’ve got plenty of company. This type of online scamming is rampant, costing Americans $800 million in 2020 alone, according to the FBI.  

Cybercrime is big-time crime, but traditional criminology theories aren’t sufficient to explain how and why it happens, argues Alain Claude Tambe Ebot, PhD, assistant professor of information systems in the Paul H. Chook Department of Information Systems and Statistics at the Zicklin School of Business.  

Dr. Tambe Ebot is the lead author of a May 2023 article in the European Journal of Information Systems that offers a novel examination of advance fee fraud. Most research draws on the accounts of victims, but Tambe Ebot and his co-authors instead focused on the perpetrators, gaining their confidence and interviewing them extensively about how and why they chose their targets and conducted their scams. What they learned may surprise you.  


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