Victim of Cyber Stalking Uses Fame to Prevent Further Hack Attacks
Before taking the title of Miss Teen USA this past August, 19-year-old Cassidy Wolf became the victim of cyber stalking.
“It happened to me when I was a normal girl and it can happen to anybody,” she said. ‘The message is to tell somebody.”
She said that a hacker took over her webcam and secretly filmed her for months, changing clothes or going to the bathroom. After gathering the illegal pornographic images, he threatened to go public with the images unless Cassidy performed sexual acts for him. When she did not comply with his demands, he posted the photos to her social media accounts.
“I was terrified,” she said Thursday in an interview with Today. “I started screaming, bawling my eyes out. I was on the phone with my mom, and I felt helpless because I wasn’t sure what to do, so it was a very terrifying moment.”
“You would never think somebody would be watching you in your room and this guy had been,” Wolf said. “The thought of that just gave me nightmares.”
After she was crowned, Wolf began to tell the world that she was a victim of cyber stalking. She wants to publicize the incident to help prevent other underage girls from falling victim to such threats.
“I want to reach teens on a more personal level,” she said. “It feels good to speak about this and warn other people.”
“The longer it goes on, the worse it will get, so if you can get the word out,” she added. “Talk to the authorities.” Wolf immediately called her mother, she said, then spoke with the FBI, who are now investigating the cyber stalker.
“According to the FBI, I was one of 12 other cyber-stalking victims this person targeted,” Cassidy said. “I believe most of the victims including myself were underage when we were stalked.”
“Delete cookies, clear your browser often and put a sticker over your web cam when you are not using it,” she said.
Cyber Stalking Could Happen to Anyone
According to a Nielsen report from 2010, the average person spends 7 hours per month on Facebook. This is unsurprising, considering how Facebook and other online media sites have changed our lives.
Smart phones implant a GPS stamp called a geotag into digital images captured using their system. This geotage identifies the exact location where the photo was taken through coordinates embedded into the coding. When you share that picture in social networking sites such as Twitter or Facebook, then your location can easily be made, according to Ben Jackson, co-founder of ICanStalkU.com.
Jackson further adds, “We take that data, look at the publicly available photos and map it into an address so that we can tell a person was at a certain location when the photo was posted.”
According to Wikipedia, cyber stalking is “the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, a group of individuals, or an organization.” With all the potential ways to mine information online, it is important to take steps to ensure that you and your children do not fall victims of cyber stalking.
The Strom Law Firm Protects Victims of Cyber Stalking and Other Crimes
If you or someone in your family becomes the victim of a crime, contact a knowledgeable South Carolina personal injury and wrongful death lawyer at our firm to learn how we can help you.
A crime victim attorney at our firm handles cases involving victims of:
- Drunk driving/DUI/drug offenses
- Assault and battery
- Murder or manslaughter
- Rape, date rape or other sexual assaults
- Child pornography
- Stalking or Kidnapping
- Police brutality
- White collar crime
If you or a loved one are the victim of cyber stalking, identity theft, kidnapping, rape, or other criminal acts, the attorneys at the Strom Law Firm can help. We offer free, confidential consultations so you can discuss your personal injury in full confidence. Do not hesitate to contact us today. 803.252.4800