Tuesday, December 24, 2019

8 safety tips to learn after watching creepy stalker Joe in Netflix's 'You'

Netflix's "You"
WARNING: The following tips contain some spoilers from season 1 of "You"

Season 2 of Netflix's creepy new series "You" will be released Dec. 26 and Joe is back at it, again - this time with a new love interest and in a new city... uh oh!

"You" dropped on the streaming service last December after originally airing on Lifetime earlier in 2018. And, if you binged the first season like I did, then you know how the show follows a murderous stalker's (Joe Goldberg) obsession with a woman (Beck) whom he meets at his job, a bookstore. 



Joe will stop at nothing to "protect" the woman he loves and he doesn't care what or who he has to knock out of the way to ensure his love, Beck, is happy and safe with him... even if this means killing a couple of people. 

I must admit, I got creeped out from watching this show and it made me clean up my social media accounts in fear that there's another Joe out there lurking. We tend to overshare on social media and that just makes it way too easy for people to learn about us without even personally knowing us. 


Here are 8 privacy/safety tips to keep in mind:


Do NOT take pictures outside of your residence

Although this seems like common sense, you'll be surprised how many people pose in front of where they live and post when they're going on vacation or post pictures of their brand new car. Please, let's stop showing off so much. 

I watch MTV's "Catfish" on the regular and the show hosts usually screen grab pictures from someone's social media accounts to do a reverse image search to see if any information pops up so they can catch the person who is catfishing. It's important to remember pictures can be Google searched and the location on those pictures may pop up. In "You," Joe searched through Beck's social media pages, found a picture of her standing in front of a brownstone in New York, did a search on the photo, anvoilà, the rest is history. 

So, be mindful when posting pictures of your apartment complex or your house or even a local park or restaurant that you live nearby, and don't give off clues of where your friends and family live. 



Keep your blinds closed at night

I lost count of how many times I yelled at my TV every time they showed Beck inside her apartment with her blinds open. It reminds me of all the times I drive through this nice section in Montclair, NJ, and I pass all of these big houses where I can see straight through people's living rooms and dining rooms. I just shake my head and think: oh, you must be putting on a show for potential burglars, hunh? You obviously want people to see all of the expensive items you have inside your home. Or, could it be that the non-blind closers are lazy? It's really not that hard to open blinds in the morning and close them at night. You never know who is watching on the outside.

MORE TV: 17 shows to start binge-watching right now

Run a Google search on the people you're dating

It never hurts to do a little research. I Google every damn thing! I've Google'd all of my exes, dates and even people I'm interested in. I do a thorough sweep of their social media pages and I look for certain things to see what type of person they are and to see if I spot any early red flags (I have a mental checklist of No No's). 

I also Google coworkers, my friends, my family, a potential employer before I go on an interview, and I even Google my own name once in a while. It never hurts to do your own little "investigation" on the people you know. It worked out for stalker Joe.



Use passwords on your electronic devices

Beck's computer was in her own home which should be a safe space. She didn't know Joe would sneak in her apartment and search around on it. It was wayyyy too easy for Joe to pry into Beck's private messages. Lock your phone/iPad/computer/etc.

Ask questions from the jump

Joe did all of his background research on Beck and knew A LOT before he even started dating her. Hell, he fell in love with Beck just from stalking and watching her from her window. He became obsessed with her daily routine, her friends, her activities and followed her around. When they officially started dating, Beck didn't even ask the basic get-to-know-you questions. 

At one point in the show, Beck realized she doesn't even know her boyfriend as well as she thought because they always talked about her. Joe was smart. He was always consumed with learning everything and anything he could about Beck but she wasn't taking the time to learn about him, his life and his past. If she did this sooner rather than later, maybe she would have gotten some clues as to what kind of person Joe really is and she would've seen something is off with him. 


Be careful with who you post/tag on social media

When I had my private Instagram page, I posted any and everything. I had no care in the world because my page was private and everyone on my friends list was someone I personally knew. Now, my Instagram is public and I let anyone follow me, but I'm also extra careful with what and who I post/tag. 

It was so easy for Joe to dig into Beck's personal life on her Instagram page. She made it way too easy for people to get to know her and her friends and even her ex because she tagged everyone. And, with a stalker like Joe, you better believe he's clicking on every single tag and soaking up every little bit of information he can find to learn more about your life and the people in it. 

Get to know their friends

Joe met all of Beck's closest BFF's, hung out with them, met up with them for chats and not once did Beck meet any of his friends or family. Like, c'mon! The closest she came to meeting people in Joe's life was when she met his caregiver, his exes friend, and the people he worked with at the bookstore. But these were red flags from the jump. Someone's friends can tell you a lot about a person. And, if you haven't met not one single friend of the person you're dating, then something ain't right.



Change up your routine 

A lot of times in these stalker movies, the stalker becomes obsessed with learning one's daily routine. In "You," Joe believes he is a good guy and he believes he has to save Beck from people who are unworthy of being her friend - like Peach who had a bit of an obsession with Beck. 

Peach and Joe bumped heads a lot and it was only a matter of time before he knocked Peach out of Beck's life. Joe stalked Peach and learned she was a runner who ran in Central Park. He learned her routine and at one point he even attempted to kill her while she was out jogging. I point this out to say, it never hurts to change up your routine a little. By changing up your daily routine, this makes it difficult for one to document your daily activities. 
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