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Agent selection and threat actualization in contamination cases: Predicting action from perpetrator behavior

Agent selection and threat actualization in contamination cases: Predicting action from perpetrator behavior

Kilbane, Sarah C. (2018) Agent selection and threat actualization in contamination cases: Predicting action from perpetrator behavior. Journal of Threat Assessment and Management, 5 (3). pp. 173-187. ISSN 2169-4842 (Print), 2169-4850 (Online) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1037/tam0000103)

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Abstract

While existing research on the topic is sparse, previous works have shown that there is believed to be a substantial threat of intentional, malicious contamination of the supply chain by criminals and terrorists (CFSAN, 2001; WHO, 2008). Genuine contamination incidents have the potential to result in mass casualties, although empty threats are often enough to generate public fear and lead to considerable economic damage. While empty threats often appear indistinguishable from those which will result in contamination, it is thought that certain variables identified in perpetrator communications may be able to help separate empty threats from those which will be actualized. This research thus attempts to determine whether a perpetrator’s reported choice of agent could offer functional predictions for the likelihood of actual contamination in future incidents. Findings indicate that chemical agents alone are more likely to be associated with genuine contamination, while the claimed use of biological agents alone as well as chemical, biological and radionuclear (CBRN) agents combined are more often associated with empty threats. The utility of these findings will be discussed, as well as suggestions for future research.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: contamination; product tampering; threat actualization; CBRN; Bayes’ Theorem
Subjects: K Law > KD England and Wales
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities
Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities > Department of Law
Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities > Law & Criminology Research Group
Last Modified: 13 May 2019 13:04
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: GREAT 2
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/20416

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