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Serious, therefore Organised? A Critique of the Emerging “Cyber-Organised Crime” Rhetoric in the United Kingdom

Lavorgna, Anita; Sergi, Anna

K Jaishankar

This paper, based on discourse analysis of policy documents, departs from a critique of the juxtaposition of the terms “serious” and “organised” in policies against organised crime in the UK. The conceptualisation of organised crime as national security threat supports our hypothesis that a similar critique can be applied to the emerging narrative of cyber-organised crime in the country. We argue that, whereby organised crime has become essentially “serious” as consequence of its characterisation as a national security threat, cyber crime is becoming “organised” in the policy narrative because of its seriousness. The seriousness and organisation of cyber crime justifies its inclusion within the national security agenda, thus accessing the procedural benefits of criminal intelligence assigned to national security threats. The implications associated to the evolution of such narratives in policy-making need to be assessed while policies are still developing. 

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