Online Sex Offending and Risk Management

  • M. Brennan
  • H. L. Merdian
  • D. Perkins
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Risk, Crime and Society book series (PSRCS)


Investigations, arrests, and convictions for online sex offending have risen exponentially in recent years, creating new challenges and demands at all stages of the criminal justice system. The most prevalent issue for psychological assessment concerns the reliability and validity of an assessment of risk of reoffending, both within online and offline spaces. The chapter will review the current knowledge on different types of online sex offending behaviour, including use of child sexual exploitation material, online solicitation behaviour, and use of the Internet for international perpetrators of sexual abuse, with a particular focus on young offenders. A key consideration is the availability and use of specific risk assessment/management tools in relation to risk appraisal and case prioritisation. A second key consideration is the online environment and its role as a potential facilitator of offending behaviour. The chapter will explore how these findings inform future treatment and prevention approaches.


Child Sexual Exploitation Material Online child sex offenders Live online child sexual abuse Youth-produced sexual images Self-generated sexually explicit material Risk assessment Risk management Prevention 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Brennan
    • 1
  • H. L. Merdian
    • 2
  • D. Perkins
    • 3
  1. 1.University College CorkCorkIreland
  2. 2.University of LincolnLincolnUK
  3. 3.Royal Holloway, University of LondonLondonUK

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