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Online Harassment,More to Explore

 · Nearly one-in-five Americans (18%) have been subjected to particularly severe forms of harassment online, such as physical threats, harassment over a sustained period,  · While small shares overall say their harassment was due to their sexual orientation, 50% of lesbian, gay or bisexual adults who have been harassed online say they think it What is online harassment? Online harassment is abusive behavior that happens online (through email, messaging, social media, dating sites, and other platforms). Abusers who  · Online harassment is a grave thing and if someone knows a few good ways to divert their I.P address (and is absolutely rotten in the head), they might just be inclined to do ... read more

That can make the fear more palpable and prosecution more unlikely. Some examples of cyberstalking include:. Cyberstalking is difficult to combat because the stalker could be in another state or sitting three cubicles away from the victim.

Social networking presents security issues for victims of stalking. A profile on a social network might include information such as your email address, phone number, general or even specific address information, birthday, legal name, names of family members, and even minute-to-minute updates on your location.

If a victim has a public profile, a stalker could easily access any information posted to the social networking account. Even with strong privacy settings or a private profile, a stalker might be able to access your account. A few of the ways this can be accomplished include:.

There are laws providing for criminal and civil liability for revenge porn, but victims may want to first take action to get the material taken down as quickly as possible.

Many social media sites have created policies for reporting and removing this kind of material from their websites. If you are a victim of stalking, consider suspending your social networking accounts until the stalking has been resolved.

If you decide to continue to use social networking sites, here are a few tips to help keep you safe:. California was the first state to pass an anti-stalking law in , but now all 50 states have an anti-stalking law. In California, both criminal and civil laws address stalking and online harassment. According to the criminal laws, a stalker is someone who willfully, maliciously and repeatedly follows or harasses another victim and who makes a credible threat with the intent to place the victim or victim's immediate family in fear for their safety.

The victim does not have to prove that the stalker had the intent to carry out the threat. California Penal Code California Penal Code m. Additionally, it is illegal to make credible threats by means of any electronic communication device, including but not limited to telephones, cell phones, smart phones, tablets and computers. Another law makes it a crime to use an electronic communication device to distribute personal information of another person without their consent, and with the intent to harass them or cause them fear.

There are more severe penalties when the stalker pursues the same person in violation of a court restraining order, with a sentencing range of two to four years imprisonment. Persons convicted of felony stalking also face stricter penalties if they continue to stalk their victim s.

Courts may issue restraining orders to prohibit stalking. California Family Code A victim, family member or witness may request that the California Department of Corrections, county sheriff or the director of the local department of corrections notify them by phone or mail 15 days before a convicted stalker is released from jail or prison.

The victim, family member or witness must keep these departments notified of their most current mailing address and telephone number. The information relating to persons who receive notice must be kept confidential and not released to the convicted stalker. See Civil Code When stalking occurs in the workplace, an employer can request a temporary restraining order or an injunction on behalf of the employee who is a victim of stalking.

California Code of Civil Procedure Victims may also request that the California Department of Motor Vehicles DMV suppress their automobile registration and driver's license records from being released to persons other than court and law enforcement officials, other governmental agencies or specified financial institutions, insurers and attorneys.

California Vehicle Code It is prohibited for anyone to knowingly publicly post the personal information of a stalking or domestic violence victim with the intent to put them in danger or in fear of danger. In a political environment where Americans are stressed and frustrated and antipathy has grown , online venues often serve as platforms for highly contentious or even extremely offensive political debate. And for those who have experienced online abuse, politics is cited as the top reason for why they think they were targeted.

Respondents who indicate they have personally experienced any of these behaviors online are considered targets of online harassment in this report.

Beyond politics, more also cite their gender or their racial and ethnic background as reasons why they believe they were harassed online. As online harassment permeates social media, the public is highly critical of the way these companies are tackling the issue.

But even as social media companies receive low ratings for handling abuse on their sites, a minority of Americans back the idea of holding these platforms legally responsible for harassment that happens on their sites. These are some of the key findings from a nationally representative survey of 10, U. adults conducted online Sept. The following are among the major findings. On a broad level, Americans agree that online harassment is a problem plaguing digital spaces.

Many Americans have also had their own experience with being targeted online. Many individual types of behaviors are on the rise as well. The shares of Americans who say they have been called an offensive name, purposefully embarrassed or physically threatened while online have all risen since Online harassment is a particularly common feature of online life for younger adults, and they are especially prone to facing harassing behaviors that are more serious.

Gender also plays a role in the types of harassment people are likely to encounter online. There are also differences across individual types of online harassment in the types of negative incidents they have personally encountered online.

Young women are particularly likely to have experienced sexual harassment online. Lesbian, gay or bisexual adults are particularly likely to face harassment online.

While men are somewhat more likely than women to experience harassment online, women are more likely to be upset about it and think it is a major problem. Those who have been harassed were then asked whether they believed certain personal characteristics — political views, gender, race or ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation — played a role in the attacks.

Smaller shares point to their religion or their sexual orientation as a reason for their harassment. Each of these reasons has risen since the Center last asked these questions in There have been 6 percentage point increases in the shares of Americans attributing their harassment to their political views as well as gender.

Race or ethnicity, sexual orientation and religion each saw a modest rise since There are several demographic differences regarding who has been harassed online for their gender or their race or ethnicity. Taken together, this means half of those who have experienced online harassment did not know the person involved in their most recent incident. Asked to recall where their most recent experience took place:.

Women and young adults were more likely than others to experience harassment on social media. Men—and young men in particular—were more likely to report online gaming as the most recent site of their harassment.

Those who responded to their most recent incident with online harassment took the following steps:. Regardless of whether a user chose to ignore or respond to the harassment, people were generally satisfied with their outcome. They are more likely to take actions like unfriending or blocking the person responsible, confronting the person online, reporting the person to a website or online service, changing their username or deleting their profile, and ending their attendance at certain offline events and places.

After-effects of online harassment: Asked how upsetting their most recent experience with harassment was, the responses ran a spectrum from being quite jarring to being of no real consequence:.

Taken together, half found their most recent experience with online harassment a little or not at all upsetting. Again, there were differences in the emotional impact of online harassment based on the level of severity one had experienced in the past.

When it comes to longer-term impacts on reputation, there is a similar pattern. Those who experienced physical threats and sustained harassment felt differently.

About a third felt their reputation had been damaged by their overall experience with online harassment. Perceptions of online environments: To explore the context that informs online harassment, respondents were asked about their general perceptions of and attitudes toward various online environments.

Respondents were asked whether they thought a series of online platforms were more welcoming toward men, more welcoming toward women, or equally welcoming to both sexes. While most online environments were viewed as equally welcoming to both genders, the starkest results were for online gaming. This survey was conducted May 30 — June 30, and self-administered via the internet by 2, web users, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.

For more information on the American Trends Panel, please see the Methods section at the end of this report. About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world.

Please note that this guide is for informational purposes only. We are not able to counsel stalking victims. Online harassment may involve threatening or harassing emails, instant messages, or posting information online. It targets a specific person either by directly contacting them or by disseminating their personal information, causing them distress, fear, or anger. Cyberstalking is a type of online harassment that involves using electronic means to stalk a victim, and generally refers to a pattern of threatening or malicious behaviors.

All states have anti-stalking laws, but the legal definitions vary. Some state laws require that the perpetrator make a credible threat of violence against the victim.

Stalkers can use the anonymity of the Internet to commit their crimes. That can make the fear more palpable and prosecution more unlikely. Some examples of cyberstalking include:. Cyberstalking is difficult to combat because the stalker could be in another state or sitting three cubicles away from the victim.

Social networking presents security issues for victims of stalking. A profile on a social network might include information such as your email address, phone number, general or even specific address information, birthday, legal name, names of family members, and even minute-to-minute updates on your location. If a victim has a public profile, a stalker could easily access any information posted to the social networking account. Even with strong privacy settings or a private profile, a stalker might be able to access your account.

A few of the ways this can be accomplished include:. There are laws providing for criminal and civil liability for revenge porn, but victims may want to first take action to get the material taken down as quickly as possible.

Many social media sites have created policies for reporting and removing this kind of material from their websites. If you are a victim of stalking, consider suspending your social networking accounts until the stalking has been resolved.

If you decide to continue to use social networking sites, here are a few tips to help keep you safe:. California was the first state to pass an anti-stalking law in , but now all 50 states have an anti-stalking law. In California, both criminal and civil laws address stalking and online harassment. According to the criminal laws, a stalker is someone who willfully, maliciously and repeatedly follows or harasses another victim and who makes a credible threat with the intent to place the victim or victim's immediate family in fear for their safety.

The victim does not have to prove that the stalker had the intent to carry out the threat. California Penal Code California Penal Code m. Additionally, it is illegal to make credible threats by means of any electronic communication device, including but not limited to telephones, cell phones, smart phones, tablets and computers. Another law makes it a crime to use an electronic communication device to distribute personal information of another person without their consent, and with the intent to harass them or cause them fear.

There are more severe penalties when the stalker pursues the same person in violation of a court restraining order, with a sentencing range of two to four years imprisonment. Persons convicted of felony stalking also face stricter penalties if they continue to stalk their victim s. Courts may issue restraining orders to prohibit stalking. California Family Code A victim, family member or witness may request that the California Department of Corrections, county sheriff or the director of the local department of corrections notify them by phone or mail 15 days before a convicted stalker is released from jail or prison.

The victim, family member or witness must keep these departments notified of their most current mailing address and telephone number. The information relating to persons who receive notice must be kept confidential and not released to the convicted stalker. See Civil Code When stalking occurs in the workplace, an employer can request a temporary restraining order or an injunction on behalf of the employee who is a victim of stalking. California Code of Civil Procedure Victims may also request that the California Department of Motor Vehicles DMV suppress their automobile registration and driver's license records from being released to persons other than court and law enforcement officials, other governmental agencies or specified financial institutions, insurers and attorneys.

California Vehicle Code It is prohibited for anyone to knowingly publicly post the personal information of a stalking or domestic violence victim with the intent to put them in danger or in fear of danger.

Many other states also have confidentiality programs that allow victims to suppress personal information. It is a crime to take explicit photos or videos of another person and distribute them in a way that is intended to cause emotional distress. If the victim is a minor, or if the perpetrator has previously been convicted, the punishment is more severe. California Penal Code j , k.

Unauthorized Information: The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act creates civil and criminal liability for a person who obtains any information from any internet-connected computer without authorization. An additional civil and criminal remedy exists for those who access a computer with the intent to defraud. Copyright Infringement: Victims of nonconsensual online publication of intimate photographs or videos revenge porn may bring a civil suit for copyright infringement if the victim is the person who originally took the picture, and is thus the copyright owner.

Posted: Jun 01 Revised: Oct 25 Please note that this guide is for informational purposes only. Who Is Affected? Cyberstalking California Law Federal Law Resources 1. What Is Online Harassment? Cyberstalking Stalkers can use the anonymity of the Internet to commit their crimes.

Some examples of cyberstalking include: Sending manipulative, threatening, lewd or harassing emails from an assortment of email accounts. Creating false online accounts on social networking and dating sites, impersonating the victim or attempting to establish contact with the victim by using a false persona. Posts may also be lewd or controversial — and result in the victim receiving numerous emails, calls or visits from people who read the post online. A few of the ways this can be accomplished include: Hacking your account Creating a false profile and sending a "friend request" or "follow request.

Verify with your friends and family members that they own the account before accepting the request. Gaining access to the accounts of your already-established connections such as Facebook friends or Twitter followers. If you decide to continue to use social networking sites, here are a few tips to help keep you safe: Take advantage of privacy settings.

With some social networking sites, you may be able to make your profile completely private simply by checking a box. With others, such as Facebook, privacy settings can be complex to navigate.

Take advantage of added security settings. One of the best examples is two-factor authentication. When you enable this, your account will require you to provide something you know like a password with something you have like a specific device. Therefore, if someone gets your password he or she will not be able to log in to the account without the specific code that the service sends to your device. L imit how much personal information you post to your accoun t.

For example, you may not want to include contact information, your birth date, the city you were born in or names of family members. Do not accept "friend requests" or "follow requests" from strangers. If you recognize the individual sending the request, contact him or her off-line to verify he or she sent the request. Warn your friends and acquaintances not to post personal information about you, especially your contact information and location. Avoid online polls or quizzes, particularly those that ask for personal information.

Don't post photographs of your home that might indicate its location. For example, don't post photographs showing a house number or an identifying landmark in the background. Use caution when joining online organizations , groups or "fan pages. Use caution when connecting your cell phone to your social networking account.

If you do decide to connect your cell phone to your online account, use extreme caution in providing live updates on your location or activities. Avoid posting information about your current or future locations, or providing information a stalker may later use to hone in on your location, such as a review of a restaurant near your house.

Always use a strong, unique password for every social networking site. California Law California was the first state to pass an anti-stalking law in , but now all 50 states have an anti-stalking law. Federal law Federal laws that deal with stalking and harassment: Unauthorized Information: The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act creates civil and criminal liability for a person who obtains any information from any internet-connected computer without authorization.

Section A 2 makes it a federal crime to stalk another person across state, tribal or international lines, using regular mail, email, or the Internet. The stalker must have the intent to kill, injure, harass, intimidate or cause substantial emotional distress, or to place a victim or a victim's family member, spouse or intimate partner in fear of death or serious bodily injury.

Section A Interstate Domestic Violence: Section a 1 makes it a federal crime to travel across state, tribal, or international lines with the intent to kill, injure, harass, or intimidate a spouse or intimate partner and to commit, or attempt to commit, a crime of violence against that spouse or intimate partner.

Section Interstate Violation of a Protection Order: Section a 1 makes it a federal crime to travel across state, tribal, or international lines with the intent to violate a protection order and to subsequently engage in conduct that violates that order.

Harassing Telephone Calls in Interstate Communications: This statute makes it a federal crime to use a telephone, the internet, or any other telecommunications device to annoy, abuse, harass, or threaten another person at the called number. If you suspect that caller ID information has been falsified, you can file a complaint with the FCC.

Callers must have the choice to reveal or block their numbers for any interstate calls. Resources National Center for Victims of Crime M St. NW, Ste. Department of Justice The OVC has an online Directory of Crime Victim Services. The directory allows you to search by state or country for services that match specific types of victimization. National Domestic Violence Hotline The NDVH helps victims find safe houses. org National Network to End Domestic Violence Specializes in technology-based stalking Web: www.

org Cyberstalking Resources: Working to Halt Online Abuse, www. htm Other Websites: End Stalking in America, www. net Association of Threat Assessment Professionals, www. org no endorsement implied C.

The State of Online Harassment,You are here

 · While small shares overall say their harassment was due to their sexual orientation, 50% of lesbian, gay or bisexual adults who have been harassed online say they think it What is online harassment? Online harassment is abusive behavior that happens online (through email, messaging, social media, dating sites, and other platforms). Abusers who  · Online harassment is a grave thing and if someone knows a few good ways to divert their I.P address (and is absolutely rotten in the head), they might just be inclined to do  · Nearly one-in-five Americans (18%) have been subjected to particularly severe forms of harassment online, such as physical threats, harassment over a sustained period, ... read more

If you decide to continue to use social networking sites, here are a few tips to help keep you safe:. Privacy concerns. In a relationship where domestic violence or stalking is present, the abusive person may do these things to maintain power and control over you. A few of the ways this can be accomplished include: Hacking your account Creating a false profile and sending a "friend request" or "follow request. Federal law Federal laws that deal with stalking and harassment: Unauthorized Information: The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act creates civil and criminal liability for a person who obtains any information from any internet-connected computer without authorization. They may try to trick a young person into believing that they are trustworthy, that they are a friend or they may even pretend that they are the same age. Many other states also have confidentiality programs that allow victims to suppress personal information.

What can I do to stay safe or prevent the mis-use of a GPS-enabled device? How can I prevent the abuser from posting my online dating harassment on Facebook or Instagram? To further ensure that each ATP survey reflects a balanced cross-section of the nation, the data are weighted to match the U. Online harassment is abusive behavior that happens online through email, messaging, social media, dating sites, and other platforms. See report from Project deShame to learn more about teens experiences of online sexual harassment, online dating harassment. Many individual types of behaviors are on the rise as well. Lesbian, gay or bisexual adults are particularly likely to face harassment online.

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