Technology-facilitated abuse is a form of controlling behaviour that involves the use of technology as a means to coerce, stalk or harass another person.
If you are concerned that your use of the internet is being monitored, you can:
- Find out how to browse this website privately
- Read tips from esafety about staying safe online while living with an abusive partner.
Examples of technology-facilitated abuse
- Sending abusive texts, emails or messages via social media
- Making continuous controlling or threatening phone calls
- Making someone prove where they are by sending photos of their location
- Checking someones text messages, social media activity or internet activity
- Forbidding someone from having a phone or limiting who they can contact via phone or internet
- Spying on, monitoring or stalking someone through any type of surveillance device (such as a tracking system or spyware)
- Sharing intimate photos of someone without their consent (sometimes called revenge porn)
Impacts of technology-facilitated abuse
Being constantly harassed or monitored can, like any other form of abuse, leave you feeling powerless and justifiably fearful for your safety.
Someone who uses technology to abuse you is probably also making it harder for you to leave the relationship by limiting your ability to talk privately with friends or contact support services that could help you.
This person may also use technology to harass, abuse, monitor or track your location after you leave the relationship. The time after leaving a family violence situation can be very dangerous, but there are things you can do to plan for your safety.
If you are experiencing technology-facilitated abuse…
- Ensure you are safe – if you have experienced any form of technology abuse you should go to your local police station and report it. There are laws against some forms of technology-facilitated abuse, such as the sharing of intimate photos and the installation of surveillance devices without consent. The officers at your local police station should also be equipped to check your phone, car and home for spyware or devices.
- Call Safe Steps – you can call Safe Steps 24/7 on 1800 015 188 for confidential support, information and assistance.
Watch a case study of technology-enabled violence against a woman and her children, providing strategies to help women identify and manage the risk of technology-enabled violence.