Stalking is following someone around in a way that makes them feel hunted or not safe in some other way. It is not just one event but an ongoing process that threatens or makes that person feel scared. Someone who does this is called a stalker. The stalker may do this because they want to be involved in that person's life or because they want to have power over that person's life. The stalker can hurt that person's feelings by making them scared. They may feel they do not have the power to stop the stalker. Psychologists say stalking is a way of hurting someone's mind with serious effects. Sometimes a stalker may go on to hurt that person's body by assaulting, raping or murdering that person.
Cyberstalking is when the stalker uses the Internet to contact or follow that person. The stalker may make direct contact with that person, they may send nasty messages to that person or spread lies about them to others. Sometimes stalkers use the Internet to learn more about the other person. They might find their address, phone number, workplace or photograph. Then they might use this information to do more stalking or find other ways to hurt that person on the Internet or hurt their body.
The person who is stalked on the Internet may feel they have more power if they can simply delete emails or turn their computer connection off. Or they may feel they have less power if they do not know who the stalker is.
- Connie Menting. "Cyberstalking".