Financial Crime Tradecraft: Backstopping

Research output: Other contribution to conferenceAbstract


Where insufficient attention is paid to how fraudsters learn, plan and gain access to their victims, there is a risk of overlooking fraudsters as active agents in their crimes. Drawing on the authors thesis, this article identifies three interlined activity domains common to complex financial crimes, namely access learning and planning. Analysing fraudsters activities linked to these domains explains variations in modus operndi and the deployment of specific tradecraft. Data drawn from interviews with police detectives and criminal case management files were separated into insider and outsider cases for thematic analysis. The study found outsiders tended to demonstrate higher levels of task intensity earlier along their fraud event timeline, whereas insiders demonstrated higher levels later. The study describes specific forms of tradecraft aligned to each activity domain, including secondary systems and organisational interface points, learning through subversion and stigmergyic processes and the deployment of planned backstopping and operational security strategies. Finally, the study describes three distinct criminogenic learning phases, specifically the pre-intent/post-intent and crime/post-crime learning phases.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2022
EventANZSOC Annual Conference 2022 - Darwin Conference Centre, Darwin, Australia
Duration: 28 Nov 202230 Nov 2022


ConferenceANZSOC Annual Conference 2022
Abbreviated titleTransforming criminology for the 2020s and beyond
OtherThe 2022 conference will be the first opportunity for our community to come together in the one physical location since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We’re excited to be hosting the 2022 ANZSOC Conference in Darwin, the NT’s capital and a lively harbour city well-known as Australia’s gateway to world-class nature and cultural activities and experiences.

With multiple airlines operating regular flights into the city, Darwin is on average four hours to most of Australia’s capital cities, making it an easy destination for delegates to access from across the country.

We encourage delegates to extend their trip either side of the conference so they can visit the many wonderful sights and attractions the city and Northern Territory has to offer.
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