Cyber Stalking

priyanshuit's picture


Cyberstalking is a crime in which the attacker harasses a victim using electronic communication, such as e-mail or instant messaging (IM), or messages posted to a Web site or a discussion group. A cyberstalker relies upon the anonymity afforded by the Internet to allow them to stalk their victim without being detected. Cyberstalking messages differ from ordinary spam in that a cyberstalker targets a specific victim with often threatening messages, while the spammer targets a multitude of recipients with simply annoying messages.

How do they Operate

   1. Collect all personal information about the victim such as name, family background, Telephone Numbers of residence and work place, daily routine of the victim, address of residence and place of work, date of birth etc. If the stalker is one of the acquaintances of the victim he can easily get this information. If stalker is a stranger to victim, he collects the information from the internet resources such as various profiles, the victim may have filled in while opening the chat or e-mail account or while signing an account with some website.

   2. The stalker may post this information on any website related to sex-services or dating services, posing as if the victim is posting this information and invite the people to call the victim on her telephone numbers to have sexual services. Stalker even uses very filthy and obscene language to invite the interested persons.

   3. People of all kind from nook and corner of the World, who come across this information, start calling the victim at her residence and/or work place, asking for sexual services or relationships.

   4. Some stalkers subscribe the e-mail account of the victim to innumerable pornographic and sex sites, because of which victim starts receiving such kind of unsolicited e-mails.

   5. Some stalkers keep on sending repeated e-mails asking for various kinds of favors or threaten the victim.

   6. In online stalking the stalker can make third party to harass the victim.

   7. Follow their victim from board to board. They “hangout” on the same BB’s as their victim, many times posting notes to the victim, making sure the victim is aware that he/she is being followed. Many times they will “flame” their victim (becoming argumentative, insulting) to get their attention.

   8. Stalkers will almost always make contact with their victims through email. The letters may be loving, threatening, or sexually explicit. He will many times use multiple names when contacting the victim.

   9. Contact victim via telephone. If the stalker is able to access the victims telephon, he will many times make calls to the victim to threaten, harass, or intimidate them.

  10. Track the victim to his/her home.

WHOA (Working to Halt Online Abuse), an online organization dedicated to the cyberstalking problem, reported that in 2001 58% of cyberstalkers were male and 32% female (presumably in some cases the perpetrator's gender is unknown). In a variation known as corporate cyberstalking, an organization stalks an individual. Corporate cyberstalking (which is not the same thing as corporate monitoring of e-mail) is usually initiated by a high-ranking company official with a grudge, but may be conducted by any number of employees within the organization. Less frequently, corporate cyberstalking involves an individual stalking a corporation.

WHOA reported that, in 2001, cyberstalking began with e-mail messages most often, followed by message boards and forums messages, and less frequently with chat. In some cases, cyberstalking develops from a real-world stalking incident and continues over the Internet. However, cyberstalking is also sometimes followed by stalking in the physical world, with all its attendant dangers. According to former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, cyberstalking is often "a prelude to more serious behavior, including physical violence." In 1999, a New Hampshire woman was murdered by the cyberstalker who had threatened her in e-mail messages and posted on his Web site that he would kill her.

There are a number of simple ways to guard against cyberstalking. One of the most useful precautions is to stay anonymous yourself, rather than having an identifiable online presence: Use your primary e-mail account only for communicating with people you trust and set up an anonymous e-mail account, such as Yahoo or Hotmail, to use for all your other communications. Set your e-mail program's filtering options to prevent delivery of unwanted messages. When choosing an online name, make it different from your name and gender-neutral. Don't put any identifying details in online profiles.

Should you become the victim of a cyberstalker, the most effective course of action is to report the offender to their Internet service provider (ISP). Should that option be impossible, or ineffective, the best thing to do is to change your own ISP and all your online names. WHOA reports that over 80% of cases reported in 2001 and 2002 were resolved by these methods, while 17% were reported to law enforcement officials.

A true cyberstalker’s intent is to harm their intended victim using the anonymity and untraceable distance of technology. In many situations, the victims never discover the identity of the cyberstalkers who hurt them, despite their lives being completely upended by the perpetrator.

Cyberstalking is not identity theft. An identity thief, whether stealing from a stranger or a family member, has a very specific goal in mind — financial gain. Identity thieves are unconcerned by the consequences of their behavior on the victim’s life, whereas the actions of a cyberstalker are deliberate and focused on the consequences to the victim.

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About the Author

priyanshuit's picture

Name
priyanshu

Last Name
sahay

Gender
Male

Website / Blog
http://www.hackersonlineclub.com

About me
Myself PRIYANSHU. >> Certified Cyber Law Expert >> Certified Cyber Security Expert >> Certified Ethical Hacker >> Working on Cyber Security, Ethical Hacking, Investigation, VAPT, Web Designing. Catch Me On >> Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/priyanshu.it Twitter: http://twitter.com/priyanshu_itech Email: priyanshu@cyber-india.in

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