I have recently discovered that two people on Facebook are pretending to be me! It may just as well be one person who has created two profiles using my name and surname. I really find it very unlikely that this is mere coincidence. To be honest, I thought that this type of impersonation happened only to celebrities so that some people could fraudulently add "fans" and receive comments.
My first reaction was to report these profiles to Facebook.. I was required to provide my phone number and when I did so, I got the option "call me now" or "cancel". I clicked "call me now" only to get the following response: "too busy". I guess this must be an automated message. Not only has Facebook not taken any action so far but they haven't even sent me an email to let me know whether they intend to do something about it. What are Report buttons for then? I must admit, though, that Facebook's privacy settings are very good since you can choose who should see your content and personal information. But can they prevent people from pretending they are someone else? Are we really safe online?
The truth is I felt so frustrated and unsafe that on the spur of the moment I expressed my intention to close my Facebook account however hard it would be for me to give up my friends and all the content I have created over the years. Finally, having talked this over with Alkis, I realised that it wasn't worth giving up on my Facebook friends. Alkis said I'd rather ignore the impersonator and go on enjoying the interaction with my friends.
Ignoring my stalkers was, after all, what I did four years ago when I was cruelly harassed on the old Yahoo360 by a group of people who took pleasure in attacking my friends, my country and me personally as a teacher and as a woman using hideous hate language. That was a horrible experience I really don't wish anhyone to go through online.
Have you ever been stalked or harassed online? How did you react? What did you do about it?