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Domestic Abuse and Technology

domestic violence

What to do if your significant other is controlling you by monitoring your social media accounts and electronic devices?

Due to the current pandemic, the only form of communication that many of us have with one another is through electronic means such as text, e-mail, or social media. The current stay-at-home orders have led to an increase in domestic abuse. Unfortunately, many feel they do not have a choice but to stay. Others are afraid if they reach out for help that their abuser will find out. In many instances of domestic abuse, the abuser will force their significant other to give them their cell phone to go through text messages or may demand that all passwords to any social media accounts be provided to them. The abuser will go through phone records and go to great lengths to intimidate them to feel that they are in control.

Sometimes victims may not be aware that their significant other has access to their accounts. Some programs can be used to allow someone to see the text messages being sent by phone. A situation that commonly occurs is when you log onto another’s electronic device and forget to sign off. This allows the owner of the device to continue to have access to those online accounts. Be sure to always log out if you are using a device that is not your own to enter passwords. You may also want to change your passwords regularly to ensure the security of your account.

Many times, abusers will also hide tracking devices on their victim’s vehicle so they can monitor their location at all times. The victim may go months if not longer without ever knowing their location is being tracked.

Your significant other insisting on invading your privacy isn’t a romantic gesture or a way to show they care; it is abuse and a way to control you. If you are currently in a domestic abuse situation, please reach out to one of the resources listed below.

If you are not currently experiencing an emergency and would like to speak with a family lawyer about domestic violence, protection orders, and your options, call or contact us online.

Domestic Violence & Child Abuse Resources:

SafeHouse Denver:
303-318-9989 (24-hour crisis line)

National Domestic Violence Hotline:
1-800-799-SAFE (7233) (24 hour crisis line. Chat available)

Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline:
844-CO-4-KIDS (24 hour crisis line)

The Center for Trauma & Resilience:
traumah Domestic Abuse and
303-894-8000 (English), 303-718-8289 (Spanish) (24 hour crisis line)

The Crisis Center, Douglas County:

Women In Crisis / The Family Tree, Jefferson County:

Project Safeguard:

Gateway Battered Women’s Services, Arapahoe County:

Violence Free Colorado:

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