Cyberstalking, a new crime: The nature of cyberstalking victimization

  • Vana Papakitsou
Keywords: Cyberstalking, victimization, technologies, new media, internet


The emergence of communication technologies, or ‘‘new media,’’ such as the Internet, has provided an additional conduit and method for stalkers to identify and target their victims. This evolution or transformation of stalking in common discourse is known as cyberstalking. Cyberstalking is a serious predatory behavior that arrives from the evolutionary need for control in the pursuit of resources and reputation. Originally, stalking involved behavioral invasion and referred to nonelectronic means of intrusion (e.g., physical surveillance, mailing letters). Cyber stalking is forensic concern of our society with an increasing tendency, and it is a fact that behaviors and acts of the perpetrator need to be researched more. Cyber stalking is a new form of stalking, despite the fact that the disease issues that differentiate cyber bullying, cyber harassment and cyberstalking are still discussed in the bibliography. Several discussions in literature consider cyberstalking as an extension of physical stalking. The differentiation of cyber stalking as a unique act, albeit sharing some of the characteristics of physical stalking, is an important point for providing a typology of cyber stalkers that can be used efficaciously by investigators. Cyber stalking as well as stalking is generally fueled by power, control and anger from the actions of the victim or, in some cases, from the inaction of the victim. It is estimated that the number of cyber stalking cases will increase as the internet provides a safe place in which the perpetrator can hide his identity, while at the same time is referred as a kind of obsession. The field of stalking has been greatly expanded and improved over the last decade, but cyber stalking remains poorly understood, and there are available fewer researches. Generally cyber stalking includes a range of behaviors that usually start from a perpetrator and it is related to a pattern of harassing or threatening behavior.

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