One of the biggest possible nightmares in participating in online activities is being harassed by online stalkers. People who know what’s best for them should stay clear of these people. In the online world however, it is very difficult to determine if someone is actually doing the stalking since there is seldom any physical intimidation similar to the real world where the target would see the stalker’s presence everywhere he or she goes.
Forms of Online Stalking
Online or cyber stalking can take many forms but they all boil down to the great discomfort and anxiety of the target. Online stalkers can be someone known to the target or a complete stranger. If one thinks about it, a known perpetrator tend to be more dangerous because they already have access to certain personal information which a stranger may find difficult to obtain.
Some of the more common forms of cyber stalking include monitoring of online activities of the target and gathering personal information from social media accounts of relatives and friends of the target. It can also be in the form of making false accusations , encouraging other people to join in the harassment activities, posing as the target specifically in online purchases and transactions, and sending a virus to the target’s computer. Whatever form the stalking takes, the end result is distress to the target.
How to Avoid Online Stalkers
Protection is always the first step in avoiding something potentially dangerous. In the online world, it makes sense to protect the personal information of users. Posting very personal information in social media platforms makes possible targets very vulnerable to online stalking attacks. It is best to keep private things private and share only those that can be safely seen by anyone.
Online users must always be cautious in their dealings since the cyber-world has made it possible for stalkers to hide behind a made up name and profile image. If any form of online communication makes a person uncomfortable in some way, it would be best not to react but rather report the questionable behavior or communication to the people who can handle it better such as the online community moderator and the like.
Know the Current Risks
Online users who know the current risks will always be one step ahead of potential stalkers. Awareness allows people to create their own safety measures applicable to their situation. By observing the usual decorum in human communication even in the online world, users can help themselves stay clear of online stalkers.