Phreaking refers to activities such as stalking, harassment or threatening behaviour using landline or, more likely, mobile phones.
The Metropolitan Police offerÂ the following advice should you be subjected to any form of phreaking:
â€¢ Take a mobile telephone with you when you go out.
â€¢ Carry a personal attack alarm and learn how to use it – do not carry anything that is meant for use as a weapon.
â€¢ Try to alter your daily routines, ask friends to go with you whenever possible, and always try to let someone know what your plans are.
â€¢ Keep a record of what happened, where, when every time you were followed, phoned, received post or e-mail.
â€¢ The more details you have the better, how the offender looked or sounded, what they were wearing, the make, and number plate or colour of their car.
â€¢ Keep letters, and parcels as evidence: even if they contain frightening or upsetting messages, do not throw them away and handle them as little as possible.
â€¢ Keep copies of e-mails on disk and print out hard copies, do not delete the original.
â€¢ Making notes in a diary is a good idea. Write the information down as soon as possible, when events are still fresh in your mind.
â€¢ Record phone conversations if you can and keep a copy.
â€¢ Make sure you keep any stored messages (including text messages) or telephone numbers that you have received on your mobile phone and caller ID units.
â€¢ Tell your friends, neighbours and work colleagues about what is happening.
â€¢ Answer the phone by saying ‘hello’, not your name or number.
â€¢ Try to keep calm and not show emotion, many callers will give up if they don’t think they’re making an impression on you or your feelings.
â€¢ Use an answer machine to screen out calls and only talk to people you want to.
â€¢ If the caller rings again, put the handset down on a table for a few minutes – the caller will think you’re listening. After a few minutes replace the handset, you do not have to listen to what the caller has to say.
â€¢ Do not confront your stalker or even engage them in conversation.
â€¢ Do not, under any circumstances, agree to a meeting to talk about how you feel about them constantly bothering you.
â€¢ Do not respond in any way to calls. If you ignore the phone nine times and pick it up on the tenth, you will send the message that persistence pays. Once they have your attention, they will be encouraged to carry on.
If you find yourself subjected to phreaking then use the advice listed in this blog to help deal with the problem. Â Remember that the Police will help you if the stalking is persistant.
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