Dark Side of Cyberspace Overview
Online Malevolence & iPredator
Darkside of Cyberspace is a metaphor and conceptual framework defining a virtual environmental realm that includes all criminal, deviant, deceptive, harmful and malevolent activities in the abstract universe of cyberspace. Whereas iPredator is a criminal, deviant and disturbed typology construct, Darkside of Cyberspace also includes legal and illegal online activities, as well as, destructive and self-destructive online behaviors.” Michael Nuccitelli, Psy.D., iPredator Inc. 
iPredator is an Information Age forensics, Cybercriminal Psychology and human consciousness concept. This conceptual framework began construction in 2009 and will inevitably be amended in time. Given this concept is new combined with having been constructed at the beginning of the Information Age, the construct author, Michael Nuccitelli Psy.D., has compiled for your reference many of the definitions he designed or accessed in his mission to create a comprehensive framework describing what he terms, the Dark Side of Cyberspace.
iPredator: A person, group or nation who, directly or indirectly, engages in exploitation, victimization, coercion, stalking, theft or disparagement of others using Information and Communications Technology [ICT]. iPredators are driven by deviant fantasies, desires for power and control, retribution, religious fanaticism, political reprisal, psychiatric illness, perceptual distortions, peer acceptance or personal and financial gain. iPredators can be any age or gender and are not bound by economic status, race, religion or national heritage. iPredator is a global term used to distinguish anyone who engages in criminal, coercive, deviant or abusive behaviors using ICT. Central to the construct is the premise that Information Age criminals, deviants and the violently disturbed are psychopathological classifications new to humanity.
Whether the offender is a cyberbully, cyberstalker, cyber harasser, internet troll, cybercriminal, online sexual predator, cyber terrorist, online child pornography consumer/distributor, online psychopath or engaged in internet defamation or nefarious cyber deception, they fall within the scope of iPredator. The three criteria used to define an iPredator include:
- A self-awareness of causing harm to others, directly or indirectly, using ICT.
- The usage of ICT to obtain, tamper with, exchange and deliver harmful information.
- A general understanding of Cyberstealth used to engage in criminal or deviant activities or to profile, identify, locate, stalk and engage a target.
Unlike human predators prior to the Information Age, iPredators rely on the multitude of benefits offered by Information and Communications Technology [ICT]. These assistances include exchange of information over long distances, rapidity of information exchanged and the seemingly infinite access to data available. Malevolent in intent, iPredators rely on their capacity to deceive others using ICT in the abstract and artificial electronic universe known as cyberspace. Therefore, as the internet naturally offers all ICT users anonymity, if they decide, iPredators actively design online profiles and diversionary tactics to remain undetected and untraceable.
Cyberstealth, a sub-tenet of iPredator, is a covert method by which iPredators attempt to establish and sustain complete anonymity while they engage in ICT activities planning their next assault, investigating innovative surveillance technologies or researching the social profiles of their next target. Concurrent with the concept of Cyberstealth is iPredator Victim Intuition [IVI]. An iPredator’s IVI is their aptitude to sense a target’s ODDOR [Offline Distress Dictates Online Response], online & offline vulnerabilities, psychological weaknesses, technological limitations, increasing their success of a cyber-attack with minimal ramifications.
iPredator Bridge: iPredator Bridge is a theoretical tenet of iPredator representing the psychological, perceptual & behavioral trajectory of people who use Information and Communications Technology [ICT] to harm others motivate by self-righteousness, moral turpitude, religious, political, philosophical convictions and pro-social perceptual distortions. Not initially driven by criminal, malevolent or deviant endeavors, iPredator Bridge seeks to define why some people approach the nefarious and malevolent realm of iPredator, decide to proceed, and then continue along a trajectory where their cognitive, affective, behavioral and perceptual actions harm others or societies.
Similar to the iPredator, they are motivated by personal convictions, greed, power, control, narcissism or psychopathology. Different from the iPredator, they have yet to engage in criminal/deviant activities using ICT or use complex perceptual distortions to validate the harm they cause. iPredator Bridge investigates why some people draw near to this realm and either proceed in their maladaptive trajectory or cease and desist. Hidden in cyberspace, and through ICT, they contemplate the benefits and detriments, proceed, and then continue a path where their cognitive and perceptual processes are focused upon directly or indirectly harming others. For those who cross this proverbial bridge, they enter a world where their choices are increasingly governed by criminal, deviant, immoral and maladaptive processes.
Although it is assumed all humanity, has residing deep in their psyche, the potential & Dark Psychology for behaving in harmful and malevolent ways they rarely or never activate, ICT and cyberspace offers a direct connection and psychological route to the dark side. Just as ICT and cyberspace is incredibly pro-social and beneficial to humanity, these same technological advancements can lead humanity to diabolical and sinister endeavors. iPredator Bridge is a symbolic representation of the approach, route and initial crossing into the realm of the iPredator. In a rudimentary and abstract way, it is posited that cyberspace, ICT and all future technological advancements, related to information technology, is an extension of the mind and the instinctual drives of the collective brain to replicate itself outside a human organism. Related to this postulate are the theoretical tenets of Carl Jung [1875-1961] and his construct of the Collective Unconscious.
“The Information Age technocentric concept of being “connected” is actually a paradox of disconnection causing us to lose our instinctual drives for social cohesion, allegiance and selflessness. As our dependency upon Information and Communications Technology [ICT] grows, spreading throughout our collective human consciousness, the less we care for our neighbors and the more we delude ourselves into thinking that online connections are far more valuable than realty based relationships.” Michael Nuccitelli, Psy.D. (2014)
Michael Nuccitelli, Psy.D.
Michael Nuccitelli, Psy.D. is a NYS licensed psychologist and cyber criminology consultant. He completed his doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Adler University in 1994. In 2010, Dr. Nuccitelli authored the dark side of cyberspace concept known as “iPredator.” In November 2011, he established iPredator Inc., offering educational, investigative, and advisory services involving criminal psychology, cyberstalking, cyberbullying, online predators, internet trolls, the dark side of cyberspace and internet safety. Dr. Nuccitelli has worked in the mental health field over the last thirty-plus years and has volunteered his time helping cyber-attacked victims since 2010. His goal is to reduce victimization, theft, and disparagement from iPredators.
In addition to aiding citizens & disseminating educational content, Dr. Nuccitelli’s mission is to initiate a sustained national educational and awareness internet safety campaign with the help of private, state, and federal agencies. He is always available, at no cost, to interact with online users, professionals, and the media. To invite Dr. Nuccitelli to conduct training, media engagements, educational services, or consultation, please call him at (347) 871-2416 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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