You have a brief romance, then a break-up. But the short-lived romance does not end there.
Revealing photos of you appear online. You find yourself locked out of your Facebook account. Then the password to your bank account is changed, without your knowledge.
And that is only the beginning.
Next your ex claims that you have been stalking him. To prove it, he points to threatening texts and emails on his phone you did not actually send. The court issues him a protective order.
Now, the situation really escalates. Your one-time boyfriend reports that you violated the protective order, though you did not. You find yourself arrested.
If all this seems farfetched, think again .
Not only is technology being used to embarrass and frighten . Electronic communication can be utilized to manipulate the legal system, tying the lives of former spouses and romantic partners into knots.
Untying those knots can be both expensive and time-consuming. More often than not, legal representation is required.
Cyberstalking can isolate victims from family, friends, and employers. It can rise to extortion, and result in financial ruin.
Emails with abusive language are just the tip of the iceberg. Personal relationships may be disrupted, parental rights lost, and professional reputations destroyed by false accusations.
While cyber law is a developing area, there are a growing number of experts in digital forensics and social engineering (the use of deception to induce individuals to divulge confidential information for fraudulent purposes).
CyberInvestigation https://cyberinvestigation.com, Digital Forensics Corp. https://www.digitalforensics.com, and Cyber Blackmail 911 https://cyberblackmail911.com are just a few offering their services to victims.
While there are no guarantees against cyberstalking, there are measures that can be taken :
- Passwords should be changed every 30-45 days on all online sites, including email and Facebook. Computer generated passwords are preferable.
- Passwords should not be shared with partners or family members who are recovering addicts.
- Details as to identity and whereabouts should not be posted on any social media platform; surnames and/or phone numbers should not be disclosed on online dating sites.
- Security settings on Facebook should be set so that only friends can post. Friend requests from strangers should not be accepted.
- Anyone exhibiting suspicious behavior on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram should be blocked immediately.
- Private messages from unknown senders on any social media platform should not elicit a response.
Vigilance is called for, on all fronts.
“These…things the Lord hates…A lying tongue…A heart that devises wicked plans…A false witness who speaks lies…” (Prov. 6: 16-19).
 Quartz, “Your Worst Office Romance Was Never This Bad” by Justin Rohrlich, 1/15/20, https://qz.com/1782446/your-worst-office-romance-was-never-this-bad/.
 Wikipedia, “Cyberstalking”, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyberstalking.
Brian Houston, the founder of Hillsong Church (a megachurch popular with Hollywood celebrities) has stepped down from the board in the face of criminal charges that he concealed his father’s child sex abuse. Frank Houston admitted to that abuse before his death.
See, https://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/ny-hillsong-church-steps-down-board-charged-hiding-dad-sex-abuse-20210918-caugobq6zjellibs7gle2ifcdy-story.html for further details.
FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT: https://alawyersprayers.com
15 responses to “Cyberstalking”
A very interesting and important post that you have brought to us all, and that we should all greatly appreciate. Hackers are the terrorists of the internet, or should I say of cyberspace and they should be treated appropriately as they cause too much unnecessary damage to people and to companies. Laws should be created to deal specifically with that problem and the punishments should be swift and severe because we all need to use the internet and we should not be exposed to these hackers who only know how to destroy what has been created for the good of the people. Thank you Anna and all the best.
I cannot understand why we are not better protected against such terrorists. They have the potential to destroy lives. Wishing you all good things, Francisco. A.
I quite agree Anna! And thank you!
In many respects, anti-social media is the better moniker – at least the possibility should also be in our minds.
So true, Marilee.
This is a very wise post. I know people whose lives have been torn apart by cyberstalking. We need to be alert and to take sensible, protective measures.
Unfortunately, this is a dangerous world.
Very informative !
Thank you. I’m glad you found it helpful.
Yes I did 🙂
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You mentioned about Brian Houston in the footnotes; crazy how this man shelter abuses happening in his Hillsong chruch brand…shame
It damages the Christian witness.
You are right Anna
As a chef and a food writer I use social media sites to help promote my articles and recipes and get me work. If this was not the case I would spend very little time on it. Stalking in any form is a reprehensible crime but even more so when it is cyberstalking.
As a society we need to look at the toxic social media companies and their hard to fathom reluctance to hold themselves to a decent moral standard that discourages bad behaviour. It is too easy for a people to have an account on a social media site using a anonymous name/nickname as a shield to then verbally, attack others…or worse.
Governments in the west stand on the sidelines and ring their hands, hoping that huge corporations like facebook or google will grow a conscience, rather than stepping in with large punitive fines that will force them to find a better way forward.
I often compare the internet to the US wild west in the 19th century, and the abuse and greed of the robber barons of the time. Whether it is hacking, identity theft, trolling or cyberstalking we the people need to demand more from our governments to adress this growing problem.