That discarded meal might not be what it seems.

In these days of social media, random encounters with the bizarre are often tickets to viral fame. All it takes is a fluke sighting like a rice cooker that looks like Iron Man or a goldfish swimming in a public toilet, and anyone can be raking in the likes like Justin Bieber for a day.

But these 15 minutes of fame can also be used against us by people with bad intentions. For example, let’s say you’re walking through the underground corridor of a subway station when you spot a cooked whole crab lying on the ground. Most people would probably think, “That’s wacky. I’m going to take a photo and put it up on Instwitterbook!”

That’s just what one anonymous Twitter user did on 6 February.

This tweet is simply posting images of the tweets which people are discussing. The identities of the actual people involved are hidden

The original tweet received thousands of likes and retweets but it also got a word of warning from another unnamed Twitter user.

“This is a common method that stalkers used to find the social media accounts of their targets. They toss unusual things on the street and when they post it online, the stalker can confirm their accounts.”

And with that, a playful little discovery takes a dark turn. However, this is only a theory, and many online were skeptical that this was really the case.

“Come to think of it, it is very strange for someone to drop an expensive crab like that.”
“Hmm, I wonder. If the stalker already knows the person’s route so well, is the trap really necessary at that point?”
“This person seems to know a lot about the ‘stalking world.'”
“Seems just as likely that the original poster planted it their themselves.”
“It’s a good way to narrow down a single account from a group of possible ones. It’s easy to understand if you read the manga Stalkers.”
“But you can’t see the person taking the picture. How can they confirm it?”
“Anyway you look at it, that’s a horrible waste of a 3,000-yen [$27] crab.”

Without details, it’s hard to say whether this is an actual trap set up by a stalker or just a coincidence, but the underlying lesson is very important regardless. It’s an often overlooked vulnerability in our daily lives that groups like the Fukuoka Prefecture police are trying to raise awareness of.

▼ Video PSA on the dangers of accidentally revealing too much personal info on social media.

Cases been reported before in which stalkers acquire victims simply by passing by them in a train station. Also considering that last year an idol was tracked down by a stalker who gleaned information from a reflection in her eyeball, this crab trap isn’t out of the realm of possibility at all.

It’s impossible to completely avoid stalkers and lead a normal life, but the best we can do is question the things that we come across in our daily lives and report them if they seem suspicious.

Source: 9 Post, My Game News Flash
Top image: Pakutaso
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