Online Privacy: How to Protect Yourself in a Divorce

Digitalization has gone so far that every single choice and action in our life somehow involves our online activities. The divorce is not an exclusion. So, when you wonder how to protect yourself in a divorce take into account your digital security, too. 

Review the possible threats to your online privacy during marriage termination and take the suggested steps to protect yourself from undesirable outcomes. 

The Threat of Keeping Your Information Unsecured

If you qualify for Pennsylvania online divorce and opt for amicable dissolution, you don’t have anything to care about concerning digital safety in most cases. But if your marriage is a more complicated situation, and you expect your spouse to get revengeful and collect as much data against you as possible, be ready to fight for your online privacy by all means. 

Illegal vs. Legal Snooping

The need to protect yourself gets even more relevant since your spouse is lawfully allowed to use all data that failed to be secure against you in the case. Here it is necessary to define the difference between legal and illegal snooping your partner may opt for when searching for evidence to sabotage your divorce performance. 

Legal snooping includes any kind of obtaining your digital data without your permission or awareness if your partner has direct access to it. This includes knowing or guessing the passwords, having access to shared storage or through connected devices, getting data from left or shared devices which are not locked or are easy to unlock, and using any data accessible by request or made public.

Oppositely, illegal snooping means gaining data by using any hacking devices, programs, and algorithms. To claim any information to be illegally obtained you have to provide strong evidence. In all other cases, the information will be used as a part of your divorce process.

Negative Effects of Lack of Information Protection

If you forget or fail to protect your digital data, expect it to have a strong impact on your marriage termination process. And the outcomes will hardly be in your favor. By using the obtained data your spouse may lower your chances to get the custodial rights, decrease your share in marital property, assign more debts to you, make you pay higher alimony and/or child support, and even get you into prison. If you want to avoid these and more complications mentioned above, you need to put in the effort to secure your online privacy. 

Steps to Stay Safe Online During Divorce

One of the common pieces of advice on how to prepare for a divorce between a woman and man is to protect digital data. In most cases, you don’t have to involve any specialists but take the following defensive measures on your own.

New Passwords

Make a list of all your accounts and devices and create new passwords for all of them. Use a random password generator to avoid easily-guessable locks. Store the passwords in a secure place that you have sole access to.

Two-Factor Authentication

Apply two-factor authentication to devices and accounts where possible and necessary. So that you can prove your identity using at least two means and make any unauthorized access impossible.

Non-connected Devices

If you used to have any connected devices or accounts with your spouse or across your family, disconnect them. Even if it brings you extra complications in administering your kids’ devices or accounts, the disconnection is worth it. Plus, you will reconnect after the divorce is over.

Data Storage

Think of where you store personal data, photos, and significant documents, and how you access the storage. Protect it with password change, and double authentication, and avoid any sharing with other people. 

Children Involved

What many people miss when protecting themselves in divorce is caring about their kids’ digital security, too. Children will bring their devices and access their accounts in your soon-to-be-ex’s presence while you cannot monitor it. So, care that your children have no access or connection to your devices or data that can be used later against you.

Social Media Privacy Settings

Review your privacy media settings as well. Limit access to your page, friend list, photos, and posts. Unfriend possibly ‘dangerous friends and hardly-to-know acquaintances. Otherwise, your social media activity will be a perfect source of evidence against you in court.

Location Tracking

Disable any location tracking by any devices, programs, and accounts you own. Plus, don’t add locations to your social media posts. This way your spouse won’t use your moves to sabotage you in a divorce case

Camera Access

Cancel access to cameras on your personal and home devices. If your apps and devices can film and monitor you and your surroundings, your partner may do the same. You don’t need any undesirable footage to be used against you in the divorce process.

Social Media Use

Limit your social media use as much as possible. It covers posting, sharing, commenting, and even making new friends. But avoid deleting any past actions online. Even simple social media actions may be misinterpreted by your partner and used as proof in your case. 

Help From Professionals

If you don’t know how to protect your privacy or are not sure whether you can cover it on your own, you can always hire a professional to help you. Both a divorce lawyer and a relevant IT specialist will make you aware of possible threats and help you prevent undesirable aftermath by properly defending your digital privacy.

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