Stalking on the internet means that the perpetrator uses the internet and social media to follow, contact, and locate the victim. This can happen in different ways, but if it happens systematically, for a longer period of time, or is experienced as uncomfortable or threatening, you should always contact the police.
Examples of stalking online include a combination of commenting on or liking your pictures, status updates, posts, etc., contacting you via direct messages, emails, tags, poking you, using fake accounts to contact you from different channels—even though you have repeatedly asked the person to stop. This behavior leads to physical or offline stalking sometimes, but not necessarily.
Advice Gather digital evidence
Document and save everything that can be used to investigate what has happened.
Advice Block and protect your social media
Advice Remove comments
You can always remove other people's comments from your posts or pictures on social media. You can even remove or edit your own comments on other people's posts.
Advice Report offensive posts and comments to administrators
If you read offensive and inappropriate posts or comments on social media, you can always report this to the administrators
Advice Stalking, always report to the police!
Always report to the police. With enough evidence, you can be eligible for protective measures, like a restraining order.
Advice Never answer in affect!
Never answer in affect. Don't answer the person who is attacking you by attacking them back. Just ask them to stop. A lot of the time you don't want to answer at all, which is more than understandable. But to file a police report, it can be important that you can prove that you asked the person to stop, even when it comes to sexual harassment.
Advice You are not alone, get support!
Get help from the people around you. You do not have to be alone in this. Cyber hate falls within the responsibility of the employer, school, association or organization.
Advice Sexual harassment and sexual abuse, find support and help
Being the victim of abuse is never your fault. You can never have said, hinted at, or shown yourself in any way that gives another person the right to abuse you. Even if you are in a relationship with the person or you know them, it is still a crime and you have the right to protection and help.
Advice Take your mental health seriously
Put your mental health first. Sometimes, it can be important to take a break from social media accounts. Let someone else take care of or clear out your social media.
Good to consider if you are exposed
For something to be seen as stalking, you do not have to tell the person to stop. There is a legal understanding that you can be psychologically broken down and therefore not have the energy or the courage to say stop. However, the evidence can be stronger if you have been able to describe what is happening to you to someone around you who might be able to be a witness.
Police, BBC, Chapter 4 § 4b Swedish Penal Code