Cyberstalking, personal privacy, and moral responsibility

Ethics and Information Technology 4 (2):123-132 (2002)
Abstract
This essay examines some ethical aspects of stalkingincidents in cyberspace. Particular attention is focused on the Amy Boyer/Liam Youens case of cyberstalking, which has raised a number of controversial ethical questions. We limit our analysis to three issues involving this particular case. First, we suggest that the privacy of stalking victims is threatened because of the unrestricted access to on-linepersonal information, including on-line public records, currently available to stalkers. Second, we consider issues involving moral responsibility and legal liability for Internet service providers (ISPs) when stalking crimesoccur in their `space' on the Internet. Finally, we examine issues of moral responsibility for ordinary Internet users to determine whether they are obligated to inform persons whom they discover to be the targets of cyberstalkers
Keywords Internet search engines   Internet service providers   cyberstalking   duty to assist   legal liability   moral responsibility   personal privacy   public records
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