Have you ever been harassed on the street? Have you ever received a harsh message on a dating application? Has a colleague ever made an inappropriate remark about your appearance?
You are not the only one.
With the #MeToo movement that started in Hollywood, followed by #Balancetonporc in France for example, all you have to do is connect to Twitter or Facebook to get an idea of the extent of the phenomenon and the number of women who are victims of sexual harassment. Whether in person or online, women around the world have been victims of it in one way or another. The Internet has opened up channels of communication, and online harassment is more widespread than ever.
Harassment on social networks
The majority of online harassment takes place on social networks, which makes sense given the time most of us spend on these platforms. Extensive social networks, often combined with anonymity, generate a reality in which everything you publish, tweet or share exposes you to potential abuse.
Below, we explore the most popular social networking platforms and explain how to protect yourself from bad guys, stalkers and other trolls.
Due to its public nature, Twitter is one of the best known social networking platforms for online harassment. And it is not only celebrities and public figures who are victims of abuse. There are countless stories of ordinary people who have been attacked, often just for raising political or feminist issues.
Five ways to protect yourself on Twitter
Use several profiles
Women whose careers depend on a public profile may find it useful to use multiple accounts.
Report and block attackers
If you receive an abusive tweet, you can block the person who sent it to you.
How to block someone on Twitter:
Click on the inverted lambda in the upper right corner of the tweet, and choose to block the user.
One of the problems with blocking is that it is straightforward for users to create new accounts, which have not yet been reported.
One way to deal with this is to use the Bock Together application. Block Together automatically blocks any account that tries to track you and has been active for less than seven days, has less than 15 followers or has been blocked by your followers. This is very useful in case of an attack by an army of trolls.
In addition to blocking users, you can also report abusive incidents to Twitter.
Geotagging” consists of including the place where your message is sent. To protect yourself from doxing and harassment, it is best to avoid using this feature. Fortunately, “geotagging” is optional, and your location will not be displayed by default.
When you write a tweet, you see a localization button at the bottom, which looks like a pin. If you click on it, you will be able to add your location to your tweet.
Don’t do it, don’t do it.
The most extreme form of online harassment is “doxing.” Doxing” (derived from “docs” as in “documents”) is the online publication of someone’s personal information, such as address, telephone number, workplace, bank details, and even information about family members, to encourage harassment by other users. Doxing is particularly used in the video game industry, hackers and against celebrities. It is also a claimed means of “taking justice” when the authorities fail to act.
Use a VPN
By using a virtual private network, you can encrypt your entire online activity to protect yourself from hackers. VPNs work by tunneling your Internet data through a third-party server, avoiding exposing your IP address (an actual location). Here are some of the VPNs we recommend. You can find more on VPNs on this website opportunites-digitales.com/comparatif-vpn