Cyberstalking: Fighting Back and Staying Safe Now

It is said that vampires can’t enter your homes without an invite – same is true with cyberstalkers. We OURSELVES, are by and large the reason why these intruders are in our homes and practically broadcasting personal information even when we least expect it.

Just imagine the number of apps installed on your smartphone, PC, wearables, and gadgets, all of which are tracking what you do and keeping tabs on your secrets – is it a wonder if a breach is just somewhere close by waiting to happen? Short of living off the grid, there are ways to protect yourself from technology while enjoying its benefits. And though cyberstalking carries a ten-year sentence, may are undeterred.

“Cyberstalking is increasing because we spend so much time online,” — Dr Emma Short, the National Centre for Cyberstalking Research at the University of Bedfordshire

The truth is, it’s not just organized cybercrime syndicates specializing in identity theft that take advantage of your vulnerabilities. It can be envious workmates, ex-best friends, scorned lovers, crazed stalkers or practically anyone with malicious intent who has gained access to your data. But like the locks that you change when it doubt, passwords should be changed often.

In a survey, 47% of Americans have experienced online harassment, including cyberstalking. It is highest at 65% for those between 18-29 years old. Research shows that 66% is linked to social media and apps with Facebook is the most abused social site. Whether due to boredom or heartbreak, 88% of college students snoop on an ex, 74% hover on the social account of the new flame, and worse, 70% use a friend’s account to do the sneaky act. However, harmless crushing is different from annoying and dangerous stalking, harassment or bullying, especially these personalities can have 10 or more dummy accounts before Facebook wises up and blocks their account. There are ways you can check if there’s a stalker on your phone. Check this video for pointers:

Additionally, you can:

  1. Block, unfriend, use strict filtering and report – make sure you are able to document the aggression so log everything in case you need to see the police or go to court.
  2. Change contact information and learn all the current privacy settings.
  3. Never give your home address; using a work email or a P.O. Box is safer. Amazon can now enter your house and deliver the goods – think again!
  4. Keep virus protection updated and don’t click on links – call or check with the sender. Simple common sense but something that is usually taken for granted. Skype is particularly notorious with this.
  5. Password protect all accounts and don’t trust Google or any app that is supposed to be an impregnable vault of your passwords.
  6. Double check the validity of mail asking you to verify your account – sometimes you get spurious mail like these from fake “Paypal” and fake “Yahoo”.
  7. Check how you appear online; you might be open to attack without you knowing it. Google your name, phone, and address.
  8. Don’t be afraid to leave it to the pros. If necessary, have a computer professional sanitize your smartphone and gadgets.
  9. BE especially careful of email – 83% report being stalked by email and 65% through instant messaging.
  10. Ensure that your Wi-Fi is safe and impregnable.

We can’t help but be connected these days. But do remember that Alexa, Siri, or Cortana are not your best friends. They could be literally the Trojan horse bringing your cyberstalker nearer to you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cyberbullying: How Can We Stop This Kind of Cybercrime?

We live in a cruel world. That is reality no matter how we put it. Some people tend to insult others and put them down in order to lift themselves up. They bully people without thinking about the consequences that bit might do to the victim. One of the worst bullying nowadays is Cyberbullying.

Bullying

Bullying comes in different forms. It can be verbal, physical or emotional. Verbal bullying includes insults and curses. Physical bullying is pushing a person or hitting them intentionally. Emotional bullying is hurting someone’s feelings in different ways.

What is Cyberbullying?

Cyberbullying

This is unwanted or aggressive behavior towards other people which takes place online by using a cellphone, computer or tablet.

One example of Cyberbullying is writing hate comments on a particular person’s post. Calling people names is also bullying.

Another example — which is very common nowadays — is spreading a scandalous video or photo of an individual. Most victims of this kind of bullying are teenage girls.

What are the Effects of this Cybercrime?

Victims of this heinous crime are prone to depression and some may even think of suicide. Internet-shaming does a great deal of damage to a person’s dignity and pride. It can destroy relationships and shatter a person’s whole life.

Think and re-think before you post. Because once posted and seen by people, it can’t be undone. Stop destroying other people’s lives in exchange for a few seconds of popularity in Social Media.

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