Doxing, also known as doxxing, is a form of online harassment that involves the collection and public dissemination of someone's personal or private information, such as their full name, home address, phone number, email address, and even their social security number. This information is usually obtained through hacking, social engineering, or by searching for publicly available information on the internet. Doxing can be used as a tool of harassment, intimidation, or revenge and can have serious consequences, such as identity theft, physical harm, and emotional trauma. In some cases, doxing may be a form of vigilante justice, but it is generally considered unethical and illegal.
In online communities, doxing can be a particularly effective way for cyberbullies to harass and intimidate their victims. It can also be used to shame or expose individuals who hold opposing viewpoints or who have expressed controversial opinions. Doxing can create an atmosphere of fear and distrust in online communities, making it difficult for individuals to express themselves freely or engage in meaningful discussions. To prevent doxing, online communities should have clear policies against the practice and encourage members to report any incidents of doxing or other forms of harassment. It is also important for individuals to be mindful of the information they share online and take steps to protect their personal information.