ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — January is Stalking Awareness Month, a crime that can reveal itself in many forms. According to the CDC, 1 in 6 women and 1 in 17 men will experience stalking in their lifetime.

News10’s Stephanie Rivas sat down with JoLynn Backes, Coordinator of Community Education at the Albany County Crime Victims and Sexual Violence Center, to discuss how people can guard themselves against stalking and the resources available to victims.

From unwanted phone calls and text messages to someone showing up unannounced at a workplace, these acts aren’t crimes themselves, but stalking is against the law.  

“If it becomes a pattern, where the person is feeling fear for themselves, then it absolutely is a crime. And we can help them get orders of protection, work with police, and do safety planning to make sure they are as safe as possible,” Backes said.

Albany County residents can call the Crime Victims and Sexual Violence Center on the confidential 24-hour hotline at (518) 447‑7716.