Technology makes it easy for us to become targets
A study has found that with the ongoing advancement of digital technology comes a very real risk of stalkers finding new ways to reach their victims.
Smartphones and Facebook are very much the norm with a cross-section of the population, and these social mediums could lead us to become vulnerable targets.
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The study, from Women's Aid and the Network For Surviving Stalking has emphasised that we should be aware that social networking can often reveal more than we expect.
Passwords, usernames and even emails can all help lead a potential stalker to their victim, with worrying consequences.
Speaking on The Guardian website, Jennifer Perry, author of Digital Stalking: A Guide to Technology Risks for Victims said: 'Online stalking is definitely happening more often because there is such an array of powerful tools at stalkers' disposal making it easier to do.
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'Software companies are absolutely not doing enough to mitigate this risk. The only way we will change things is by making the public aware of the dangers.'
How much a user on the internet uses forms, passwords, and directories can lead to them becoming identifiable should this information fall into the wrong hands.
One innovation which has drew some criticism is the Facebook 'Check-in' app, which users can access when on the move.
This means their 'Facebook friends' can view the check-in at a particular destination.
But in defence, a Facebook spokeswoman told the Guardian that this sharing was 'entirely optional, and that users could always block 'unwanted attention' and the most serious cases could be acted on 'within 24 hours'.
Alexis Bowater, chief executive of the Network for Surviving Stalking, who was followed online for four years before her stalker was jailed wants the issue to be looked at more closely.
'We are calling for better police training on all types of stalking and particularly digital stalking. We are asking the internet industry to engage with us to make their customers' lives safer, she added.'