Anti-stalking laws inquiry launched
A "people's inquiry" has been launched to help reform anti-stalking laws.
MPs and peers will focus on cyber-stalking, where victims are harassed through their mobile phones and online, and consider whether the existing laws in England and Wales are tough enough.
Elfyn Llwyd MP, chairman of the Justice Unions Parliamentary Group, will lead the inquiry which also aims to tackle "society's lenient attitude towards stalking".
A series of charities called for anti-stalking laws to be strengthened in April to stop cases leading to violence, rape and murder.
A stalkers register should be set up, they said, with police given specialist training to identify victims and deal with offences.
Up to five million people a year suffer from stalking or harassment and many victims will experience up to 100 incidents before talking to the police, British Crime Survey figures show.
Last year, prosecutors said stalkers were using GPS tracking technology and mobile phone applications to track their victims. The tactic, already seen in the United States, involves using websites and apps to pinpoint victims' locations using their mobile phones.
So-called cyber-stalking is becoming even more of a problem than traditional stalking in Britain, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said.
Mr Llwyd, a Plaid Cymru MP, said: "Around one in five people will experience stalking in the UK in their lifetime and unfortunately what we are now seeing is a growing trend in cyber-stalking.
"Internet and mobile phone usage is constantly on the increase, and with the advent of numerous social networking sites, this type of harassment has, unfortunately, become a very real problem."