“I think part of what is so difficult, and has historically been so difficult, is for victims of domestic violence to communicate how afraid they are and how violent this person has been when no one’s watching....I think we have a tendency as a society as a whole to minimize this type of violence when we should be responding with a heightened level of concern...
Constantly evolving technology and expanding social media options have created new levels of risk for people affected by domestic abuse, dating violence and stalking.
Abusers frequently misuse technology to harass, frighten, threaten or stalk their partners. Some examples:
- Using GPS in vehicles or phones to track victims’ location.
- Hacking into email and social media accounts.
- Harassing or threatening via phone calls or texts.
- Pressuring victim to send nude photos, then sharing or threatening to share them.
- Filming victims without consent.
- Using key logging software to monitor a victim’s computer activities.
At the same time, technology has opened up new opportunities both for victims to seek help, and for the community to respond. Online acvitism against violence is raising new awareness of the issue, and advocates are finding new ways to reach out to people affected by abuse, and to help.
MCEDV provides training, consultation and technical assistance around issues of digital abuse and technology safety. Local domestic violence resource centers provide help in safety planning options related to technology. To learn more, please contact our office at 207.430.8334 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or call your local domestic violence resource center.