ACG-CYBER SECURITY BULLETIN NO 132 UNDERSTANDING THE RISK OF CYBERSTALKING
The following information was obtained from different cyber security sources for notification to all parties concerned pursuant to the mandate of the Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP ACG).
The information provided was classified as “Restricted” pursuant to the PNP Regulation 200-012 on Document Security and Impact Rating as high based on PNP Information Communication Technology (ICT) Security Manual s.2010-01 p. 22 and p.129.
Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, group, or organization. It may include false accusations, defamation, slander and libel. It may also include monitoring, identity theft, threats, vandalism, solicitation for sex, or gathering information that may be used to threaten, embarrass or harass.
Cyberstalkers find their victims by using search engines, online forums, bulletin and discussion boards, chat rooms, and more recently, through social networking sites, such as MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, Friendster, Twitter, and Indymedia, media outlets known for self-publishing. They may engage in live chat harassment or flaming or they may send electronic viruses and unsolicited e-mails. Cyberstalkers may research individuals to feed their obsessions and curiosity. Conversely, the acts of Cyberstalkers may become more intense, such as repeatedly instant messaging their targets.
Similar to stalking off-line, online stalking can be a terrifying experience for victims, placing them at risk of psychological trauma, and possible physical harm. Many cyberstalking situations do evolve into off-line stalking, and a victim may experience abusive and excessive phone calls, vandalism, threatening or obscene mail, trespassing, and physical assault.
Once you feel someone is stalking you, collect evidence and report to the police. The more evidence you have with you, the better. Evidence, in this case, could be the emails, screenshots of posted messages, tweets, status updates, images posted on blogs or the entire blogs. Take screenshots instead of just noting down the URL. Take full-screen screenshots as you have to show that they were indeed online and that you did not fabricate the evidence using your own personal collection.
All PNP personnel as well as the public are advised to follow the tips in order to avoid the risk of Online Scam, to wit:
- Never give out personal information. This can be used to steal your identity and access accounts.
- Don’t upload photos on social media that show your location or places where you often hang out.
- Review privacy setting on all your social media accounts as carefully as possible to ensure your information remains protected.
- Create a different email account for registering in social networking sites
- Don’t open up e-mails, files or website links from unknown sender.
- Never send pictures of yourself, your friends or family to someone you met or chat online.
For additional information, please refer to the following websites:
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