“AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB) — Victims advocates are saying they’re seeing more stalking cases being reported on college campuses. They believe there’s a direct link between technology and the increased reports.
“We have to be very cognizant of the world we’re living in and that technology is a huge part of that,” said Larissa Bachman, the Director of Passage House. “Unfortunately, it is pretty normalized.”
Bachman says location services attached to apps and devices, like Alexa, are being used to track victims every move and record what is being said without people’s knowledge.
“Those are all pieces of control that an abuser can use to have access and they can do it pretty easily,” said Bachman, who says Passage is seeing an increase in the services they’re providing.
“It’s easier for someone to do stalking and be a perpetrator now than it was years ago,” said Mary Brennan-Taylor, the Vice President of Programs at the YWCA.
She explains that, in most cases now, the stalking is starting virtually before moving to the real world and says in all cases, stalking can have signifcant impacts on those who are experiencing it.
“If you feel somebody following you class to class or they’re all of a sudden showing up, that is terrifying,” said the representative from the YWCA. “That controls somebody’s feelings of security and safety.”
According to the National Center for Victims of Crime, one out of every six women and one out of every 19 men will be victims of stalking.
“Younger kids are being exposed to more so with that comes concern,” said Bachman.
The advocates feel there may not be more incidents of stalking going on but both agencies are seeing an increase in reports and they believe it’s due to younger people being aware of the resources available.
‘Things are changing and we need to raise awareness.'”
Quoted from WIVB 4.