Protecting your digital life when separating

It is particularly important to be extra vigilant about the way you live your life online during a separation.
Protecting your digital life when separating

If you are going through a separation, it is particularly important to be extra vigilant about the way you live your life online.

Have you considered that a former partner could potentially access personal and financial information about you? When separating it is easy to forget that your partner may know your passwords or share data that is backed up to an accessible platform or device. While they may be committing a criminal offence by attempting to access accounts without your authority, this is not commonly known and will not stop someone looking.

So what can you do to avoid your personal and financial data being accessed by an ex-partner? Here are some useful tips on how to minimise the risk:

Passwords

On separation, you should consider that all your passwords could be compromised and should be changed immediately on every account and app. When you change or reset passwords, the link is usually sent to the email address, and that would be no use if your ex-partner still has access to this account.

Security questions

Your ex-partner might know the answers to your security questions used to reset passwords. Consider resetting these to something your ex-partner will not know.

Emails

Ensure no one but you can read your emails, and that you remove your email account from any device you will no longer have access to, or which has shared access with an ex-partner. You should also consider creating a new email account specifically for your legal correspondence.

Extra layer of security

One of the best ways to protect yourself online is to have an extra form of verification in place for all your apps and online accounts when you login. Two-factor authentication (2FA) helps to keep out anyone who should not have access to your sensitive information by requiring a second identification step after you enter a password.

Synchronised accounts and devices

To prevent unwanted access to your documents, photographs, contacts and text messages etc, auto syncing should be switched off from all shared accounts and devices.

GPS tracking

Disable any ‘find my phone’ apps on your devices to prevent your ex-partner from being able to see your GPS location. If your car is equipped with a built-in GPS tracking feature, we recommend switching off shared access to the car’s app.

Finances

Protect your finances by removing unnecessary authorised users to your online banking accounts.

Doorbell video cameras and CCTV

Do change passwords for any of these items at your property, to prevent unwanted access to the system.

For more information or advice, please contact Caroline at caroline.keeley@twmsolicitors.com.

For further details about our Family and Matrimonial services, click here.

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Caroline Keeley, Head of Family Law

Caroline Keeley, Head of Family Law

Learn more about the steps you can take to minimise the risk of your personal and financial data being accessed by an ex-partner.

Protecting your digital life when separating

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