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If you think your online activities are being monitor by your abuser, there are some safety precautions you may want to take.
A degree in computer programming or a specific skill set is not required in order to monitor someone’s computer and online activities. There are many ways to monitor with programs like Spyware, keystroke loggers and hacking tools.
Planning for Safer Technology Use
It is not possible to delete or clear all the “footprints” of your computer or online activities. If you are being monitored, it may be dangerous to change your online behaviors by doing something like suddenly deleting your entire Internet history if that is not your regular habit.
If you think you may be monitored on your home computer or personal laptop, be mindful of how you use the device. You may want to keep using the monitored computer for some normal activities and using a safer computer for other activities, such as looking for new jobs or apartments, buying bus tickets, or asking for help.
Computers can store a lot of private information about what you look at via the Internet, the e-mails and instant messages you send, internet-based phone and IP-TTY calls you make, web-based purchases, online banking activity, and other activities. If you are concerned that your personal computer is being monitored, using a public computer for some activities may make it more difficult to monitor usage. Know that we have a computer lab at YWCA Spokane that clients may use. Call our main office, 509-326-1190, for more information. Computers at public libraries, internet cafes, and those of trusted friends or family members may also be safer options.
If you are concerned that your online activity or your online accounts are being monitored, e-mailing may not be a safe or confidential way to communicate with service providers or others about domestic violence. Similarly, if you are concerned that your phone is being monitored, texting may not be a safe option to communicate with service providers or others about domestic violence.
If you are a member of a social networking site such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, consider reviewing your account privacy settings. Being cautious with what you choose to share may be helpful, even after reviewing your account privacy settings. Abusers may use their social networking accounts, fake accounts, other individuals’ accounts to monitor your activities. Additionally, information posted on social networking sites has been used in some court cases.
For additional support, please consider contacting our domestic violence advocates by:
- Calling our 24/hr helpline: 509.326.CALL (2255)
- Texting our 24/hr helpline at 509-220-3725 or emailing our 24/hr helpline advocates at firstname.lastname@example.org if these are safe options for you.
- Contacting the advocates at our main office by calling 509-326-1190 or visiting our office located at 930 N Monroe St, Spokane WA 99201 during our normal business hours (Monday 8 am-5 pm, Tuesday 8 am-5 pm, Wednesday 10 am-5 pm, Thursday 8 am-5 pm, and Friday 8 am-3 pm).