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What Are The Best Ways To Prevent Stalking?


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  • What Are The Best Ways To Prevent Stalking?

    What are the best ways to prevent stalking? I'm including cyberstalking in this conversation because this is an obnoxious problem on the internet.

  • #2
    Do you have a firewall, Elaine? I have Mcafee though there are many good ones out there. I had a cyberstalker that took great glee in cutting my connection. He did so 100 times in one week.
    Also, try not to get your e-mail out on the Web too much.
    I never use my real name but I'm not too worried on this forum. Mitzi is not my real name.
    I'm sure others can give you lots better suggestions.


    • #3
      Since most of the people who are on this website are law enforcement personnel, you are probably correct when you wrote that this website is probably safer than other websites. As far as e-mail addresses are concerned, I have started several different accounts with the free e-mail services (Hotmail, Lycos, etc.)and those nicknames on them aren't female names. These accounts also have fake male names in the place where I had to give my "real" name. There are also two additional e-mail addresses listed under fake male names on my Earthlink account. The fake names are extremely popular male names such as Robert, James, Thomas, etc. and the last names are very common ones such as Smith and Johnson. I have read that most cyberstalkers target internet users who have female names and I'm getting away from the habit of using any female name on message boards. It sure would be nice if I was allowed to change my user name on this message board but doesn't let anyone change their user name. This past weekend, I was very busy making sure that my passwords are harder for a criminal to learn because I made sure that my passwords have lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols in them. A book about how to protect yourself online that I bought says that people should be careful not to put too much personal information in their profiles when they register for message boards. This book also suggests that people should change their passwords once a month, avoid leaving their passwords on pieces of paper that are near their computers, use password protected screensavers, and use encryption software. Using anonymous remailers is also highly recommended. Do you use any anonymous remailers? What about the encryption software? Do you use it? I'll have to check on the firewall and see if I need one of those because they sound like a good thing to have for my home computer. Tons of cookies have been deleted on my work computer. At home, I have two unlisted, non-published telephone numbers which I don't give out to people and I'm not listed in any other type of directory. My telephone calls are screened with an answering machine and I use a post office box to get my mail. This address is on my checks and all of my bills are sent to this p. o. box. It sure sounds like that cyberstalker who was bothering you was a major pest. Where do you think that these nuts come from?


      • #4
        I don't use anonymizer. A good hacker can still get your info from the headers. It sounds like you are doing a good job protecting yourself. I think these people like to target newbies and that's what I was when this happened. He managed to get my name and phone number from my computer and even called me. I then got a new phone number and I have always used my answering machines to screen calls. I then searched my computer and found where my name and phone number were. He also had blue screen and wingate to try to slow my computer down and disguise himself.
        The firewall solved a lot of my problems. I also went on another ISP and it was then I never heard from him again. Now, I'm just really careful.
        I keep my real life seperate from computer life. I don't ever meet anyone I know here. They are my friends but I seperate the two.


        • #5
          Please take a moment to visit home of the first police explorer post in the country.


          • #6
            Glock, with the whacko's out there, it really isn't paranoia.


            • #7
              Hi ElaineE,

              Uhmmm… Wow. ..Well, “better safe than sorry;” it’s hard to argue with that maxim.

              Using the Internet is a lot better than being used by it – which, as Mitzi points out, is rather common among newbies.
              It’s easy to go too far in either direction though: either not being cautious-enough, or being overly-cautious. The latter is no-doubt preferable between the two, but neither are “necessary” to remain “Safe” on the Net.

              If you don’t know of it as yet or have never checked it out – a Site I highly recommend (and used to, to our Company’s Customers, also (when working tech support), is the ->

              Gibson Research Corporation.

              There’s a lot of valuable, interesting and otherwise useful information there.

              The bottom line is that using/surfing the Net isn’t all that unlike just being out in the world where it pertains to such things as “Cyber-stalking.”
              One of the best ways to guard against it is to use common sense before you pick one up (stalker, I mean).
              A lot has to do with the “places” you go – especially frequently; the types of people you associate with and the persona you manifest while on-line.

              In the same way we know not to hand out – or Post – our home address, phone number(s), work phone #, banking information, etc – to just anyone who asks or may come around and see it when out in public physically; people need to practice the same forms of common sense virtually.
              Don’t “give” the PBP’s anything to use against you or anyone else. PBP is my acronym for what they really are – “Perpetually Bored Predators.”

              As Mitzi also mentioned, a Firewall is a very good idea for the security-minded and conscious.
              If you’ve not yet – please do check out the info available on the Gibson Research Corporation WebSite: including the helpful section on Home Security / Firewalls.

              Having done business with them in the past to our utmost satisfaction – if a personal endorsement makes any difference – I have no hesitation in vouching for the Firewall Systems (Programs) produced and offered by - NetworkICE.

              The BlackICE Defender is an excellent Personal Firewall which is affordable and very-much worth every penny in PC Security.

              * (Beware of some of the so-called "Free Firewalls," which are anything but that) *

              Also remember not to leave yourself connected to the Net when away from your PC for any lengthy periods if on a Dialup Connection.
              Surf-smart; have a good sense of where you are at any time (especially in Chats and on Message Boards, etc) – don’t click on links (URL’s) posted by people you don’t “know” (at-least to some degree through inter-personal contacts over the net over a period of time) and “Trust” (yes! I see the irony of this advice and this post! ) – and particularly with email, don’t open file attachments in any email unless you know who it’s from, what the attachment is (in advance) and can and do check it with a good AV Program before opening it.
              Check your Web Browser’s Security level (setting); be aware of Cookies and cookie-acceptance and uses; learn about “Certificates” if you’re really concerned…
              There’s a lot one can do to assure personal security on the Net – but nothing, absolutely nothing equals common sense. . .

              No one can “hurt” or inconvenience you that you don’t allow – either actively or passively.
              Going to excessive extremes (is that a tautology?) may spoil your enjoyment of being on the Web and it’s easy to get carried-away and nurture a “paranoia” beyond anything necessary or real.

              Anyway – just my two cents thrown in… or maybe 4 cents…

              PS. IF one does ever pick up a Cyber-Stalker - of course, take all the steps possible to "shed" that nuisance; but the best, easiest and most practical one is almost always to just ignore them - most are only after that type of attention.
              Nothing like a cyber-smile and eternal silence to get them moving on to some other waste of time - (or feel free to substitute a cyber-finger for the "smile").

              ..& the two Links offered in this post may be trusted: they're both legitimate - and worth looking at (IMHO).

              [ 09-05-2001: Message edited by: Tia ]
              My respect, admiration and gratitude to all those who Protect and Serve. - Citizen


              • #8
                BlackIce isn't anything special and can be easily overcome. Leaving a dialup connection on doesn't mean a thing, it's just as dangerous as surfing the internet, which isn't that dangerous at all if you aern't infected with what not's and doing security flaws. And if no one clicked on links they didn't know from other people, there would be no term "surfing the web"

                [ 09-05-2001: Message edited by: Glock ]
                Please take a moment to visit home of the first police explorer post in the country.


                • #9
                  That may well be, Glock: it’s not anything I’ve any desire to argue over.
                  I can say that the problems I once had with “stalker-hackers” ended very abruptly after I installed my BID, and I’ve not had a single problem since then.
                  Leaving yourself connected to a dial-up connection when away and unable to see what’s happening – if you don’t have a good Firewall – leaves one exposed to hackers that may find their way in… That’s all I meant.
                  Especially bad for new users who may have programs installed they don’t even know what they are – like BDO or PC Anywhere, etc…
                  At-least when you’re at your PC if you see that sort of thing going on you can terminate your connection.

                  Re: “Clicking on links posted by others:” is a very old nuisance – especially in un-monitored chats. I’ve had to deal with way too many cases of people blaming the Company I used to work for – for virus infections they contracted while on our Chat Server from just that (even after we posted the warnings about it).
                  I probably wasn’t very clear in what I meant.

                  Of course there wouldn’t be any “surfing” if no-one ever clicked links …
                  My intent was only to point out that there are those malicious people out there who will go to chats, post a URL for people to click – they do and quickly d/l a virus.
                  It’s not nice and it’s not fun …

                  The susceptibility of new users is much higher and different than it is for veteran users, chatters and surfers: the Newbies – as Mitzi pointed out, and in light of the topic of this thread – are most vulnerable to picking up these problems. I was only trying to offer what I could as suggestions for ways to avoid it.
                  My respect, admiration and gratitude to all those who Protect and Serve. - Citizen


                  • #10
                    I want to discuss more of the precautions that I might be able to take when I'm off of the computer. I have read that many police officers and private investigators recommend that people use private post office boxes instead of the ones with the U.S. Postal Service. Some people say that it is extremely easy to get information about the people who rent p. o. boxes with the USPS. My p. o. box is with the USPS but I'm thinking about getting a p. o. box with Mail Boxes, Etc. Private investigators also say that people who don't want to be stalked should use the private mail box on all public records. Is it legal to do this? Is this a good idea? Is this what police officers do to avoid having criminals find them when they are off-duty? When I fill out the application for the private post office box, should I put my work address on it instead of my home address? This does not mean that I want to have my personal mail sent to my work address. I even have my p.o. box address on my personnel records at work. Somebody mentioned something about a signature being on the computer. What does a signature do for people who want to protect their privacy when they are on their computer?


                    • #11
                      I will be the first one to say that cyberstalking is a big time problem that most people do not take seriously enough. I was cyberstalked for years. My email programs were always hacked into, i was threatened to be killed, they dictated to me personal information about me, it was real scarey. I tried the anonymous names, I did the firewalls, I did the changing of phone numbers, I tried leaving, even leaving the internet for almost 6 months. But this person found out everything about me all the time. I finally gave up and thought if this person wants me come and get me. After that 6 months I thought, well they forgot about me - so I tried it once again. Only to be found by this same person.
                      I just passed it off and continued after that amount of time I realized I was probably just a toy to them. Sothey'd hack my computer, Id fix it. I figure if I gave up they would win. When I tried to tell someone they said "your paranoid" or "get off the net." But in time, I guess the person gave up because they knew I would get back what part of the computer they took, whether it was my HD's, emails, or windows I always got them back some how. Even tho I felt extrememly violated and harrased I wouldnt give up beating them at their own game. It was an emotional roller coaster game that I finally eventually won - I was lucky, not all those stalked are!
                      I dont think there is a best way to prevent cyberstalkers, because even IF you use anonymous info, there are ways to get the real information and a GOOD hacker will get it! However - Now I know of this one person whose 9 year old daughter was being stalked by someone from another country. This stalker saw this little girl over her parents cam site!! Sad thing is, the cam site is STILL up and running, and the little girl is there for all the world to see even AFTER the stalking happened. Now personaly, Im not one to judge BUT - if MY KID was being stalked due to MY HOBBY of cams - my cams would be turned off when the kids were around. I just think kids should NOT be shown on cam sites like that for I think you put your kids at risk. That unfortunate situation COULD of been prevented by a little forethought or learning from experience.
                      Mother is the name for God on the lips and in the hearts of all children.


                      • #12
                        oops lol I guess I got long winded and I forgot the point I was trying to make.
                        As long as there are open ports to whatever computer you are using, you can be found. Its like leaving your door open in the middle of a busy city. If you dont want to even chance it - shut that door. Dont even open it. In other words, if you dont want to risk cyberstalking dont even connect in the first place because the potential no matter what precautions you take is there.
                        Mother is the name for God on the lips and in the hearts of all children.


                        • #13
                          No, it isn't paranoia, Glock. It's being very careful. It's nervewrackung when someone does the stuff I have been subject to and seen other people subject to.

                          [ 09-09-2001: Message edited by: Mitzi ]


                          • #14
                            Hey!! Leave the paranoia talk out of this! That is my department

                            [ 09-09-2001: Message edited by: goodgirl ]
                            "They want the federal government controlling Social Security like it's some kind of federal program" ~George W. Bush, November 2, 2000


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