It is not your fault, tell someone: case studies of young women's experiences of online grooming in England

Smith, Emily, Short, Emma, Rai, Roshan, Rajput, Pinky and Wilson, Amanda (2023) It is not your fault, tell someone: case studies of young women's experiences of online grooming in England. Journal of Victimology and Victim Justice, 6 (1). pp. 7-24. ISSN 2516-6077


This research study aimed to explore how young people experience cybercrime, with the study being inductive. Thus, the type of crime(s) emerged from the convenience sample and so happened to be online grooming of young women. Using the case study method, two semi-structured interviews were conducted with young women who were ages 12 and 16 (at time of the study) with in-depth information provided for each case. The data was then triangulated between the research team and the Victim Service who co-created the study (including materials) and co-produced the manuscript. This method of triangulation also occurred to ensure the similarities and differences identified in the discussion. Similarities included that both young women had a trusted adult to tell, and that they were not to blame. Differences occurred with the police involvement as well as contradictions in the advice of ‘just block them’. This study calls for better school-based interventions and police response using actual case studies for training and education. Suggestions for future research are further explored and include: more tailored quantitative projects, further case studies and other qualitative methods, and a standardised curriculum for safety that can be devised with the Victim Service. Most importantly if online grooming occurs, this is not because the individual has done something wrong or deserve it, rather they should tell an adult and seek help to end the behaviour.

smith-et-al-2023-it-is-not-your-fault-tell-someone-case-studies-of-young-women-s-experiences-of-online-grooming-in.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution 4.0.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Downloads per month over past year

Downloads each year

View Item View Item