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who is cyber stalking meIn this generation of technology, “stalking” is a bit of a complicated term. It’s so complicated that we had to add onto it, coming up with an entirely new one: cyberstalking. We’ve talked a bit about how people can cyberstalk you, and we’ve even covered a few of the methods to use professional social networking to identify who is Googling you How Can You Find Out Who Is Googling You? How Can You Find Out Who Is Googling You? Read More . However, do you really know who is cyberstalking you?

My purpose for this article is not so much to provide details on how you can find out the identity of your cyberstalker. We’ve already explained scams like Truth Stalker that claim to reveal who is looking at your profile The Truth About the Stalker Tracker on Facebook The Truth About the Stalker Tracker on Facebook Read More , and while you can track down the IP address of someone, it still doesn’t say much. Instead, I want you to reevaluate who you think is stalking you.

It is highly possible that we’ve collectively gotten a little paranoid with all the privacy scares that come with the Internet. Perhaps we overreact to some social media interaction, and perhaps some of us even underreact. Provided are four types of characters you may encounter while in the social areas of the online world. Each of them are definitely intrusive, but are they really cyberstalking?

Review them, and then look through your friends and followers. See which ones are comparable, and in the end, decide if you need to make adjustments to your life online.

The Former Buddy

who is cyber stalking me

Remember your old dorm roommate Bill who was able to accurately launch his toenails into a coffee cup while clipping them? Yeah. You hated that guy. For some reason, guys like Bill are also the ones who want to stay connected with you via social media and email. In most cases, I would say be friendly, but if Bill starts barraging you with invitations to coffee and his children’s after-school alpaca-feeding program, you may have a right to be annoyed.

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However, let’s be clear: Bill is not a threat. He’s socially awkward, and he may be honestly trying to be a good friend. Unfortunately, this comes in the form of what appears to be cyberstalking. Yes, he may be constantly asking you how you are, publicly writing his inquiries on your Timeline in poorly formed English. He may even be Tweeting you pictures of cats that feature the caption, “Hope u hav a purrrrrfect day! LOL!”  But in this case, don’t be to hard on your old friend. It may seem like he’s is stalking you, but in reality, he may just be trying to be kind.

The Obsessive Acquaintance

what is cyberstalking

Throughout the courses of our lives, we all come across passing acquaintances. Perhaps you remember someone you briefly spoke to while in the restroom. Maybe you once had lunch with a stranger at a bartop diner. However, these types of conversations are meant to be brief. Realistically, you aren’t going to make a lifelong friend by speaking about the weather. So what happens if you are tracked down by one of these individuals using social media?

First of all, I would give whoever it is the benefit of the doubt. There’s a tiny chance that they actually may be decent people, and you may very well have a future for a friendship. On the other hand, if they start writing on your Timeline and sending you messages everyday, you may have a problem. In such a situation, I recommend blocking them with all the social media services that you have. You aren’t in the same circles, and there’s no chance of your actions biting you in the rump later on. Don’t fuss around with messages that say, “Please do not contact me.” Just cut the head off of the snake right away.

The Boundary-Hopping Coworker

what is cyberstalking

Sometimes, you have creepy coworkers. Unfortunately, you are forced to be around them day in and day out, and in some cases, they may even have some authority over you. When their creepiness moves into the realm of social media, the issue cannot always be resolved by simply blocking them. In serious situations, it might be best to report them for harassment, but what about the more minor, pettier issues?

There is such a thing as accepting someone on your social media accounts without actually having to interact with them. For Facebook, you can ignore them in addition to adjusting your status update settings so that they can’t see them, but unfortunately, you can’t block specific individuals from posting on your Timeline. With Google Plus, it’s just a matter of the circles you are in – a piece of cake, really. As for Twitter, it’s a little more tough, but we actually already have a few tips on how to identify and fend off Twitter stalkers How To Identify & Fend Off Twitter Stalkers How To Identify & Fend Off Twitter Stalkers Everyone who is on your Twitter followers list is a potential stalker. Twitter, more than Facebook, makes it easier to stalk someone. Are we being too paranoid? Is the social sphere filled with more online... Read More .

The Wannabe Lover

who is cyber stalking me

There are some sick people out there, and being the handsome, virile man-beast that I am, I’ve dealt with my share of perverted admirers. For people as good looking as me, beauty is too often a curse. Fortunately, I can speak from experience. If perchance your unwelcome suitor is sending you a series of advances written in poor taste, do not be nice about it. Too often, victimized individuals will reply with polite messages that typically incorporate annoying emoticons, hoping to kill them with kindess. Psh.

In this case, there are two words that you need to tell them: stop it. Nothing more, nothing less. If they persist, block them, but make sure to save their messages along with your response in the form of a screenshot. If the harassment continues, the obvious next step would be to contact the proper authorities. By providing evidence that you did indeed attempt to tell them to stop bothering you, they won’t have a leg to stand on.

Conclusion

These are just four levels of cyberstalking that you may run across while online. As you can tell, they are ranked in order of intensity, and I hope that you were able to apply them to your own lives. Of course, there are varying degrees that come in between what is written here, and I’d love to hear about your experiences.

What other levels of cyberstalking do you know about? Have you ever fallen victim to a cyberstalker?

Image Credits: dave_7dok1, maltman23, Victor1556dev null

  1. peter_lydon
    March 28, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Not to mention the out-and-out psycho-whack job that's in competition with you so that they can make whatever income from a niche they think they can carve for themselves online. Great article though.

    • Joshua Lockhart
      March 29, 2013 at 7:44 pm

      I assume this has happened to you. I'm intrigued. Tell me more.

      And thank you.

  2. dragonmouth
    March 28, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    You neglected to mention the biggest, the most persistent stalker out there - the government.

  3. Scott M
    March 28, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I don't understand cyber stalking.People should get out more.

  4. Nevzat A
    March 28, 2013 at 6:54 am

    I can't still understand their psychology, weird ones always exist.

    • Lisa Santika Onggrid
      April 7, 2013 at 7:52 am

      Sometimes they're just bored people. Those with too much time on their hand.

  5. Chris Marcoe
    March 28, 2013 at 5:44 am

    First off...What is wrong with after school Alpaca feeding programs? My daughter loves when I invite all my friends to it. (J/K)

    Seems like its actually just about having common sense. I've got relatives who's views WILL be forced upon you. I have the same views so its preaching to the choir. However, i really don't want it forced in my face several times a day. That is what the settings are for in Facebook. People just have to use em.

    Aside from taht, I guess I'm really not the stalkable kind.

    • Joshua Lockhart
      March 29, 2013 at 7:44 pm

      I block certain people from sharing photos on my newsfeed (those cat photos do get annoying). That doesn't have much to do with stalking, though.

      You're right, though. A lot of it is definitely common sense.

      And Chris, I'm sure your "friends" enjoy the program just as much as your daughter does.

  6. Zhong J
    March 28, 2013 at 5:06 am

    I found cyberstalker humorous, why do they have so much time to look at someone's profile page everyday and tried to trace their activity? Beats me. The internet give birth to these kinds of people who have abundant of time and perform their own "personal" deeds: scams, stalking, spamming, spoiling, annoying forums....etc.

    • ixshr
      March 28, 2013 at 12:06 pm

      agree. Better doing something beneficial than wasting time to stalk on someone's profile, better to read Makeuseof's articles than stalking :D

      Or maybe stalking is a beneficial-to-do for some people out there? I've just asked this to my friend and he said yes.. *damn.. my friend is one of the weirdo x_x

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