Online Stalking Experiences and Harms Among Female Acquaintance Stalking Victims

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

There has been a surge of research interest in online stalking, often called cyberstalking, in recent years. The overall goal of this study was to better understand whether more invasive online stalking strategies were associated with stalking course-of-conduct, victim harms, and help-seeking. Specifically, the current study examined three groups of female acquaintance stalking victims who: (1) did not experience online stalking (n = 93, 23.8%); (2) experienced online harassment but not monitoring strategies (n = 144, 36.8%); and (3) experienced online harassment and monitoring strategies (n = 154, 39.4%). Results found that more women who experienced online monitoring endured threats, life interference, sexual harassment, stalker jealousy, and control, and more of them believed the stalker wanted revenge than the other two groups. Additionally, more women who experienced online monitoring had higher fear levels, reported more problems during the stalking, and had increased resource losses compared to the other two groups. In the multivariate analysis, online harassment and online monitoring strategies were not significantly associated with fear level, help-seeking, or ongoing problems. However, online stalking strategies co-occur with stalking intensity and frequency as well as with victim harms and should be taken seriously.

Original languageEnglish
JournalVictims and Offenders
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author acknowledges the University of Kentucky Department of Behavioral Science for funding this research as well as Jeb Messer for help with the data collection.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Keywords

  • Cyberstalking
  • fear
  • resource loss
  • sexual harassment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Law

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