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What Do Closed Source Data Tell Us About Lone Actor Terrorist Behavior? A Research Note

Gill, P; Corner, E; McKee, A; Hitchen, P; Betley, P; (2019) What Do Closed Source Data Tell Us About Lone Actor Terrorist Behavior? A Research Note. Terrorism and Political Violence 10.1080/09546553.2019.1668781. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

This article contributes to the growing body of knowledge on lone-actor terrorism with the incorporation of closed-source data. The analyses presented investigate the antecedent behaviors of U.K.-based lone-actor terrorists leading up to their planning or conducting a terrorist event. The results suggest that prior to their attack or arrest the vast majority of lone-actor terrorists each demonstrated elements concerning (a) their grievance, (b) an escalation in their intent to act, (c) gaining capability—both psychologically and technically and (d) attack planning. The results also disaggregate our understanding of lone-actor terrorists in two ways. First, we compare the behaviors of the jihadist actors to those of the extreme-right. Second, we visualize Borum’s (2012) continuums of loneness, direction, and motivation. Collectively the results provide insight into the threat assessment and management of potential lone actors.

Type: Article
Title: What Do Closed Source Data Tell Us About Lone Actor Terrorist Behavior? A Research Note
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/09546553.2019.1668781
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/09546553.2019.1668781
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Lone-actor terrorism, closed sources, risk assessment, risk management
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Security and Crime Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10084756
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