Digital domestic abuse may be a growing concern under family law
Technology is now part of everyday life. Families in Orange County, California, often rely on this advanced technology in order to communicate with their distant relatives and friends. However, such conveniences can have a negative impact as well. Through the Internet and different websites, anyone can obtain information on what a certain person is doing or their whereabouts. With family law issues such as divorce and child custody, the Internet becomes a convenient way for communication. However, experts noted that advanced technology is also associated with domestic violence, another family law concern. Digital domestic abuse is rapidly increasing, and those who actually experience it are not fully aware of the situation they are in.
For example, one woman never knew that the constant phone calls and text messages of her then boyfriend was considered digital domestic abuse. She related that she became afraid whenever she missed his phone call or failed to respond to his texts on time. A psychiatrist noted that domestic digital violence is not limited to frequent calls and text messages, and that there are cases where one partner supervises the other through their Facebook accounts or by installing keylogging software that records what a person types. There are also reports where their partner created a fake account on social media platforms and posed as a stranger in order to determine if their partner is cheating on them. The National Domestic Violence Hotline cannot specify the actual number of people experiencing digital domestic abuse because people lack awareness about this family law issue.
Any kind of family violence puts an individual’s safety on the line. California residents, however, have a lot of options available to them to prevent and eventually stop the abuse. An order of protection can prohibit the alleged abuser from communicating with the victim by any means.
Source: NWCN, “‘Experts warn of growing ‘digital domestic abuse’,” June 3, 2014