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Technology and “Smart Homes” Are Giving Abusers More Ways to Control Their Victims

Posted on in Domestic Violence

Illinois domestic violence lawyersAbusive partners have always used methods of control against their victims, but with the latest advancements in technology, they have more tools at their disposal. The abuse of “smart home” devices and cell phones are just two examples that are cropping up in divorces around the nation. Thankfully, victims can protect themselves from a technologically savvy abusive spouse. Learn more in the following sections, including how a seasoned Illinois divorce lawyer can provide victims yet another layer of protection while they are seeking a divorce or separation. 

Abuse Using “Smart Homes” and Other Advanced Technology

While technology abuse may not seem like much of a threat, the truth is that perpetrators are using advanced devices like smart home systems to make the lives of their victims unbearable. For example, they may remotely turn the lights off and on, or they may turn up the heater to an unbearable temperature. Unfortunately, when victims try to explain the abuse, law enforcement and other officials may dismiss their claims as “crazy” or petty.

Another concern is that abusers usually go much further. They may start to change the door lock codes to keep the victim out of their own home (or to gain access to the home themselves). Some have even installed tracking applications and devices into their victim’s cell phone, computer, or vehicle. Depending on the situation, this could be downright dangerous for the victim and any involved children. As such, victims of technology abuse may want to seek immediate protection and qualified assistance, especially if they suspect their abuser is either stalking or tracking them. 

Protecting Yourself in the Face of Technology Abuse

It can be exceptionally difficult for victims to protect themselves from technology abuse, partly because their claims seem ridiculous to others, but also because a restraining order is difficult to enforce in such situations. After all, an abuser does not have to come into contact with their victim to gain access to their devices. Most do so remotely, and they usually have access to (and may even be the primary owner of) the technology they are using to control their victims. Thankfully, there are some strategies that technology abuse victims can employ. These include:

  • Changing the password or access code to the device;
  • Resetting the device to its factory setting;
  • Parking several blocks away from their desired location;
  • Taking notes on paper instead of on a phone;
  • Keeping cell phones and other devices at home or in their vehicles (especially when seeking legal assistance or an order of protection through the courts); and
  • Giving up usage of any devices to which the may abuser have access. 

Contact Our DuPage County Divorce Lawyers

At Davi Law Group, LLC, we prioritize the safety of all abuse victims - and that includes those who are being controlled, stalked, or manipulated by technologically savvy abusers. Able to assist you with everything from obtaining an order of protection to completing the legal aspects of a separation or divorce, our compassionate DuPage County divorce lawyers understand the risks you are facing, and we work hard to mitigate them. Start planning today. Call 630-590-6373 and schedule your private, confidential consultation with us today. 

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2018/07/02/smart-home-abuse-no-easy-out/

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