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Cleaning up after online harassment

Cleaning up after online harassment
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Q. My ex-boyfriend broke into my email and Facebook accounts. He pretended to be me and posted some nasty messages on my Facebook profile. Then he sent inappropriate email to my friends, again as me. What can I do to stop this?
-Tracy from Nashville, TN, listening on WTN 99.7 FM

A. I've been hearing this kind of question a lot lately, Tracy. Exes are increasingly using technology to get revenge. It can be anything from simple rumor-spreading to serious stalking and harassment.

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Some people blame the Internet for this trend. I don't think it's anything new. The Internet just gives already unstable people more ways to get revenge. And the effects can be pervasive.

Online harassment can be devastating. You may feel powerless to stop it. Your ex can embarrass you in front of all your friends and family. Or, worse, he can try to destroy your relationships.

Fortunately, the Internet gives you power as well. You can clean up a lot of the harassing posts on your own. And you can get the word out that you're being harassed online.

Let's look at how to take back your accounts. Then I'll cover how to make them secure. We can also talk about damage control for what's already been done.

The first step is to clean your machine. Your ex might have stolen your passwords while you were together. However, he might have put a keylogger on your system.

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