Although Netflix's YOU may trick you into liking being stalked, especially when your stalker is as attractive as Joe Goldberg, being a victim of stalking is not as cute as you might think. One of the scariest, most terrifying things that could happen to you is to be stalked by a stranger, someone you used to be close to, or a casual acquaintance. Stalkers cross the line of normal behavior and make their victims feel unsafe. Whether you’re being followed, sent weird different things, or getting phone calls, it is mandatory to put an end to this horrendous action. That said, we’ll tell you exactly what you need to do when you learn that someone is stalking you.
Let’s talk about how to know if you’re being stalked in the first place:
The following are some of the most typical indications that someone is stalking you:
- They are aware of your activities, schedule, and location.
- Despite being warned not to, they keep phoning, messaging, or delivering gifts. They often interrogate close friends and family members about you in an intrusive manner.
- They keep an eye on your online behavior, capture images or videos of you without your permission, hack into your accounts, or use your identity online.
- They attempt to intimidate or blackmail you by spreading false information or rumors about you.
What to do?
(Remember if your life is in danger or you’re being threatened, immediately call 108, which is a line dedicated to reporting cybercrime that operates 24/7)
Tell a senior
Inform your parents, the guidance counselor at your school, or another trusted adult that someone is following you. Ask them to assist you. Even if the circumstance makes you feel embarrassed and you'd prefer to keep your mouth shut; DON'T! The stalker will not stop if you keep this a secret. Even though many stalking victims feel humiliated about the situation, support from others is usually important in figuring out how to end the stalking and keep you safe.
Block your stalker
If you ask a stalker to quit contacting you, they typically won't comply. To prevent them from trying to reach you again, it is imperative to block their phone number and email address as a precaution. Moreover, you must block them on social media. Be very detailed and thorough on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and Tiktok. Whatsapp should also not be overlooked either.
Social Media: Private
Many victims choose to make their social media profiles private in order to prevent stalkers from seeing real-time updates about their lives, in addition to blocking the stalker online. Stalkers are clever; they might constantly make new social media accounts and email addresses solely to access you and/or what you're posting. Your stalker will have easy access to your photos, status updates, and other personal information if your profile is public. Making your tweets and posts private makes you safer right away, even while it reduces your capacity to share with a larger audience and people who aren't "friends."
Image credit: @younetflix
Secure your passwords
The password(s) to your phone, laptop, email, social media accounts, etc., may be known by the stalker if they were once a close friend or boyfriend of yours. Make these passwords extremely difficult to guess, and try to change them constantly. It’s preferable to change your passwords every month to be on the lookout for hackers as well.
Use social media tools
Most social media sites categorize stalking as "harassment." This ensures that you can block them on whichever platform they are contacting you on. You can also expose them by sharing their handle or username among your group of friends, who can expose them further.
Don’t let them know your whereabouts
Some of you may know that Kim Kardashian was robbed while she was in Paris simply because she posted her diamond ring photo with her location on Instagram. Stalkers immediately knew where she was, went to the hotel where she was staying, and robbed her. Therefore, you should avoid sharing any social media content that reveals your precise location at that specific moment. Even if your profile is already set to private, your stalker might easily use one of your "friends'" profiles to locate you. Turn off Location Services on your smartphone as well.
Contact law enforcement
1- Submit a report on the official website of the Ministry of Interior at the link https://moi.gov.eg/
2- Call the cybercrime hotline 108.
3- Notify the Department of Combating Computer Crimes and Information Networks at the headquarters of the Ministry of Interior in the Fifth Settlement in New Cairo, by going over there or by calling these telephone numbers: 27928484 / 27926071 / 27921490 / 27921491.
4- Keep all the messages that contain threats or insults, go to his police station, submit a report of the incident, and record the text of the messages in the report.
5- The report must be submitted within 3 months of the incident.
And when the defendant is proven guilty, the penalty for extortion is up to 3 years in prison, and two years imprisonment and a fine of 500 pounds in the case of extortion in a threatening manner.
Remember that you are not alone if you are being stalked. Being the target of stalking is frightening, especially if you think you’re the only one going through it. But, keep in mind that millions of people are stalked all over the world.
Here are some further figures regarding stalking:
- The highest rates of stalking occur among teens and young adults (18-24).
- Most stalker victims are pursued by someone they know; sometimes an ex or a close friend.