What is Cyberstalking?
Communicating with your friends or family members via social media or other online public forums could be beneficial in some cases, both socially and professionally, if you strictly adhere to the best security practices. However, if you aren’t extra cautious while surfing the web, you are likely to face unwanted consequences; the most prominent of them is cyberstalking.
Cyberstalkers use the internet to harass their victim. They sometimes target individuals, groups, or organizations and employ different techniques to irritate their victims, including slander, defamation or threats. In most cases, cyberstalker aims to gather information to use in other cybercrimes, like identity theft or offline stalking.
We can’t blame cyberstalking victims for their careless behaviour because the current online landscape is an easy target for cyberstalkers. For instance, today, many internet users recklessly share their feelings, desires and public family photos without considering its ramifications.
As we’ve discussed earlier, cyberstalking is of different forms. Still, it is not different from routine harassment in the broadest sense, but what sets it apart from the former is that cyberstalker uses the internet or social networking sites.
In most cases, victims of cyberstalking tend to avoid it in the beginning. Sometimes, specifically, initially, you are likely to receive a plethora of annoying messages or abuses from strangers that might surprise you. However, if they become the norm, it becomes more bothersome.
To keep that in perspective, let’s suppose that you receive negative comments or abuses on Facebook; it may disappoint you, but it isn’t necessarily cyberstalking. For some peoples, particularly semi-celebrities looking for fame and traction, negative comments aren’t a bad sign.
However, if you start receiving negative comments consistently and are a source of embarrassment, then it is time to start taking some preventive measures. Cyberstalkers attempt to terrorize their victims by sending them unpleasant messages intermittently.
An alarming situation started for victims when he realized these hatred messages are coming from different accounts managed by the same person. At this stage, we strongly recommend you report website owners and law enforcement agencies.
Cyberstalker doesn’t necessarily have to interact directly with you, and some victims may not even realize till the end that they were being cyberstalked. Generally, intruders employ different tools to monitor their victims and exploit the gathered information to commit crimes like identity theft.
If you don’t identify your predator initially and don’t take appropriate measure, these attackers will gather all your credentials and use that to harass you offline.
Who is Behind Cyberstalking?
Most cyberstalkers know their prey very well. For many people, frequent or unpleasant messages from their friends, colleagues, or family members aren’t distracting and annoying. However, it is worth mentioning here that receiving malicious messages from a person who isn’t amongst your acquaintances can be deemed an attempt to cyberstalking.
According to our observation, cyberstalker attempts to get information of a former who the would-be partner in some cases. Although most internet users don’t pay heed to these activities and even deemed them romantic, if the communication is unwanted, it could be an attempt of harassment. Therefore, you should be extra cautious in this case.