During some breakups, the desire to know what an ex is doing can be so strong that someone resorts to underhanded or even unlawful behaviour. Thus, spying during divorce or separation is unfortunately not uncommon.
Surveillance methods to watch for
If you suspect an ex may try to spy on you, beware of these common surveillance tactics.
- Accessing your online accounts – Your ex may know your passwords to digital accounts or know you well enough to guess them. They may install spyware or keystroke loggers on your computer. They may also pose as someone else online to glean private information from you. You can prevent these tactics by changing your passwords (and making sure they are strong) and refraining from communicating with or befriending strangers online.
- Following you around – If your ex wants to know if you are seeing someone else or where you spend your time with your children, they may follow you around to spy on you. They might hide a GPS tracking device on your car, hire a private investigator or sit outside your home to watch you. Being mindful of your surroundings and changing your routines can help you identify someone who may be following you.
- Using your kids – Parents should not have their children spy on each other during a split, but some do. Your ex might do this by asking your child about visitors you have had, giving them a tracking device to put in your home or having them record conversations. Not only can this be illegal, but it could also be irresponsible, unhealthy parenting.
- Surveilling you in your home – Smart home devices like video doorbells and security cameras can make it easy for someone to see inside a house and track who comes and goes. Be on the lookout for any new devices, lights or wires you notice inside or around your home.
Knowing what tactics parties often use can help you protect yourself from them.
Protecting yourself and your privacy
If an ex is spying on you, you can take action. You might seek protective orders, restrictions on parenting time and civil action seeking compensation for damages.
Further, talking to your lawyer about your concerns can help you safeguard your information and hold the surveilling party accountable for violating your privacy.