e-Safety checklist - for someone else
If someone you know is being followed, stalked or controlled through social media or their devices (phones or computers), follow these steps.
1) Safety first
It is a fact that the most dangerous time for a person in an abusive relationship is when they leave.
If the person you are worried about lives with an abusive partner, or has an abusive ex, help them for safety planning before you do anything else. This is critical for their safety.
Let them use your device or help them use a device in a library or another safe place. Tell them not to use their own device as the abuser may be able to discover what they are doing.
2) Be there for them
They may not be ready to make changes yet and it may not be safe for them to do so. Listen to them, respect them and offer comfort. Try not to judge or demand change. They know their situation better than anyone. Praise their strength and keep up contact with them unless that is not safe for them. Let them know you are there.
The following steps are helpful when they are ready.
3) If possible, get them their own device to use that can be kept at your place
Make sure they sign up using a new email address so the abuser doesn’t find out about the device. Make sure the bill or invoice does not reach the abuser, or get a prepaid service.
4) Don’t tag them
Anything might set off the abuser. Don’t write anything about them on social media or even mention them in comments. Don’t post photos or check them in, even if you think it is being friendly or supportive. It isn’t worth the risk.
5) Use the checklist
Go through the e-Safety checklist with them.
6) Encourage them to get support
Stalking, harassment and abuse are incredibly draining and frightening. Reassure them it isn’t their fault, and when they are ready help them get some professional or legal support.