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CYBERSTALKING AND WAYS TO PREVENT IT

Updated: Dec 13, 2020

By Ramki D & Tamil Selvi M, III year The Central Law College, Salem


Introduction

Nowadays, People are living in the digital world; everyone is using the internet in their day to day life for their work, studies and entertainment etc. People were also uploading their personal information on the internet. Worldwide the internet usage is increased at the same time the crimes through online are also increasing like theft, harassment, stalking etc. Most of the crimes were happening in the social media network which typically affects the women and children. These types of crimes come under cyber crime. The following topic deals about online stalking and it helps the readers to know about the online stalking and gives some suggestions to prevent them from these types of crimes

Cyberstalking

In the modern world, Cyberstalking is considered as the most dangerous criminals. Cyberstalking, Refer stalking or harassment are happening on the internet. It is the act of following other people by strangers through the internet, unnecessarily involved in their privacy and also watching their every personal activity.


Two persons were involved in cyber-stalking, they are

1. Attacker

2. Victim


The attacker contacts a victim through electronic communications, in a way of sending an e-mail or social media or any other online website. If you receive any unwanted messages from any other person who you don't know or a person who hates you it should be considered cyberstalking. It may have any motives like revenge, anger, theft or even lust also.

This crime targets an individual or any group of persons or any organization which is happening in the different form of slander, defamation and threats.

Types of Cyberstalkers

Here there are some types of cyberstalkers are given

1. Cyber stalking by known or unknown persons

Online stalking is mostly happening by unknown persons for theft. So they are threatening victims by posting any wrong comments or any pictures of the victims. Even the attackers are well-known to the victims like ex-boyfriend or ex-husband or enemies for taking any revenge in the way of publishing their personal information or private photos which are taken with them etc…

2. Stalking by close relationships

Close relationships refers to the person who is the current partner to the victims. The attackers want victims to depend on them and they isolate themselves from others. The harassment may happen to send insulting messages or emails to victims.

3. Cyber-stalking by organizations or individuals

An organization may influence an individual or any one person or group of individuals may threaten any organization for the financial profit.

Types of cyber-stalking

1. Email Stalking

The attackers send any defamation message or any photos of victims or any forms like job offers that need your details etc. In this way, email stalking has happened.

2. Stalking in social media

Mainly online stalking takes place in social media most of the people have an account on social networks including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram where people upload their photos, information, about their relationship and every activity of them helps the hackers to get the information about the victims.

3. Cyberstalking on computer

The cyberstalkers also may hack your computer for getting your information, photos etc. So be aware and put antivirus in your computer it helps to protect yours. The hacker sends you any link to you for hacking your computer if you touch it or enter into that link through that fake link the attacker may be able to control the actions of your computer whenever that computer is connected to the internet and also they watch your every activity through the computer.

Case of cyberstalking

In New Jersey vs. Dharun Ravi, Dharun Ravi was a college student and he secretly filmed his roommate’s sexual liaison with the other person. Then he posted his video online. After knowing this, the victim did suicide. In 2012 he was sentenced to 30 days in jail, more than $11,000 in restitution and three years of probation.

Steps to prevent

The people are giving their personal information indirectly to the other person or someone through the internet. So be careful while using the internet. Don't trust anyone other than your friends or family. Never share your personal information with other unknown people. Sometimes the action isn't controlled.


The internet has equal merits and demerits, here some methods that should help you to prevent from the cyberstalking:

1. Never reveal your home address.

2. Protect your account with a highly secured pin or password.

3. Conduct an internet search using your name and phone number.

4. The information you can notice, so can a cyber-stalker.

5. Update your antivirus software and choose a strong password to protect it.

6. Be aware of internet calls or mail asking for your information.

7. Never give out your Social Security Number or passwords.

8. Check your bank account or credit report status regularly or daily.

9. If you encounter something suspicious, it could be a cyber-stalker so act accordingly.

10. Lock or log off your computer when you step away and check your PC by a professional.

Conclusion

In the modern world, cyberstalking is considered as the most dangerous crime. People must be aware of these crimes if they want to open any link or apps must read its terms and conditions about those websites which help to prevent ourselves from these types of online crimes. In law who send or publishing or transmit any abusive message or sexually explicit in way of internet or electronic form they will be punished under Section 67A of the Information Technology Act, 2000 for their first conviction the punishment in form of imprisonment or fine the imprisonment may extend to three years or fine may extend to five lakh rupees if the person convicted on the second time the imprisonment may extend to five years or fine may extend to ten lakhs rupees. If you think that you are hacked by cyberstalkers, take actions quickly and make a copy of the abusing messages which are sent by the cyberstalkers for your evidence.