The social media has many benefits and with it some drawbacks. With the social media gaining its popularity and touching more & more lives in every growing day, stalking has become a real problem. It is relatively easy to become a victim of stalking in the social media because of its easy accessibility. Stalking sometimes start with just somebody following one online and ends up with a tragic incident. One can dig out information about somebody and use this information to find that person in the real world. This is just one of many dangers children face when using the internet.
The following are some useful tips that one can use, to avoid stalking through social media
1. Private Profiles
The most ideal way to prevent stalkers from having access to one on social media is to explore the privacy settings and ensure that all the important information are made private, not public. Most of the popular social sites has an option of hiding one’s account from the public. The settings should be set in such a manner that only one’s friends are able to get or see updates & only friends are able to post. Every social media outlets have extensive options for privacy settings.
2. Avoid Tagging
When one tags a friend in a photo, it is made visible to people who have access to the page of that person who tagged. This allows a potential stalker to download that picture as well as dig out more information about the person, thus opening up a privacy gap. In order to block this, one should change the privacy settings so that it prevents anyone to tag. Usually, this setting ensures that one gets an option to authorize a comment or a tag before it becomes visible on one’s or anyone else’s page.
3. Different Usernames
In many cases, people use a same username for all their social media profiles. The most possible reason for that is that it is assumed by many that using a same username helps their friends to find them and identify them. Though it may be true but it also helps stalkers to find them too. It is, therefore, advised to use different & variety of usernames.
4. Limit Friends
In many cases, a harmless friend request from someone leads to stalking. One should not have an open door policy for addition of new friends to one’s social network. However, if someone is fond of being a socialite and have many friends then opening a fan page might help.
5. Report Stalkers
Often cutting stalkers from social networks don’t help. The problem comes back when a stalker, after being removed, opens up a new account and resumes stalking. Therefore, one should block and report as soon as stalking is suspected. This is the most simple and effective way to stay away from stalkers.
6. Find Your Stalkers Using Unofficial Apps
Another method that you can use in order to find out who your stalkers actually are and take action against them is to find and use a software or app that can show you a list of people who have viewed and stalked your profile in the past, this is useful in networks such as Instagram where they don’t officially give you a list of your profile visitors.
If any of these said tips fail to stop the stalker then it is worthwhile to contact the social site’s help desk or administrators. After that, one can open one support ticket and list down all the info required in support ticket; like the email address, proof of harassment & other related things.