In 2012, 9,084 incidents of cybercrime were reported by select police services responsible for 80% of the population of Canada. This represented a rate of 33 cybercrime incidents per 100,000 population.
The most common type of cybercrime was fraud, accounting for more than half (54%) of all police-reported cybercrimes in 2012. Intimidation violations, composed of violations involving the threat of violence, accounted for 20% of police-reported cybercrimes in 2012, while 16% of cybercrimes involved a sexual cyber-related violation.
In 2012, an accused was identified by police in a relatively small proportion (6%) of cybercrimes against property, notably for incidents of fraud (5%) and identity theft (3%).
An accused was identified by police in connection with 31% of sexual cyber-related violations and 55% of cybercrimes related to intimidation violations. Compared to intimidation violations, sexual violations were more frequently cleared by the laying of a charge (25% versus 18%).
The majority (76%) of accused identified by police in 2012 were men. For cyber-related violations of a sexual nature, males accounted for 94% of accused.
In 2012, police identified 2,070 victims of violent incidents involving a cybercrime. Females accounted for the majority of victims of violent incidents associated with a cybercrime (69%), particularly when incidents involved a sexual violation (84%).
Self-reported Internet victimization in Canada (2009)
According to results from the 2009 General Social Survey (GSS) on Victimization, approximately 1.75 million Canadians aged 15 and over reported that they had been cyber-bullied. This represented 8% of Internet users aged 15 and over. Less than one in ten (7%) victims of cyber-bullying reported the incident to police.
Relatively few incidents of cyber-bullying were reported to police. However, those that targeted children were more commonly reported than those that targeted adults (14% versus 7%).
About 4% of Canadians who used the Internet in the previous 12 months reported being the victim of bank fraud on the Internet.
One in six (16%) Internet users indicated that they had previously come across content that promoted hate or violence. Most of the time, this content targeted ethnic or religious groups.
Online Child Sexual Exploitation
Cybertip.ca collects and analyzes tips received by the public regarding the online sexual exploitation of children and works to prevent and provide public education on the topic of online child sexual exploitation.
Online child sexual exploitation includes child sexual abuse material (child pornography), online luring, children exploited through prostitution, child sex-tourism, child trafficking, making sexually explicit material available to a minor and agreement or arrangement between two individuals to commit a sexual offence against a child.
The number of online child sexual exploitation reports received by Cybertip.ca has increased substantially from 179 reports in 2002/2003 to 10,101 reports in 2011/2012.
Between 2002 and 2012, Cybertip.ca received 67,000 reports of online child sexual exploitation.
75% of the reports submitted to the tip-line are from individuals residing within Canada. The remaining 25% are submitted from individuals in the United States and various countries across Europe.
Child pornography is, by far, the most significant form of child exploitation online, with over 90% of the reports submitted to the tip-line involving concerns about child sexual abuse images.
82% of the images analyzed by Cybertip.ca depict pre-pubescent children under 12 years of age (57% of those under eight years of age).
Over 35% of all images analyzed show serious sexual assaults, with children under eight years of age most likely to be abused in this way.
Of the children between 0 – 8 years of age, 7.3% of the images involved toddlers.
Between 2009 and 2012, Cybertip.ca has seen a 214% increase in the number of reports concerning mobile devices.
Examination of over 300 reports involving luring, grooming and online sexual exploitation shows that :
Mean age of the suspect was 26
85% of identified luring victims were girls and 15% boys
Contact requests were made in 17.5% of confirmed cases
Exhibitionistic behaviour by the suspect was seen in 20.5% of cases
Threats were evident in 13% of cases
The suspect referenced child pornography in 50% of the cases
Benjamin Mazowita and Mireille Vézina, (2014). Police-reported cybercrime in Canada, 2012. Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics: Statistics Canada 85-002-X, Ottawa.
Samuel Perreault, 2011. Self-reported Internet victimization in Canada, 2009. Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics: Statistics Canada 85-002-X, Ottawa.