Internet safety

If possible, use a computer at a library, community centre, health service or trusted friend or family member, that way you will not have to worry about someone monitoring what you do on your computer. If you are using your home computer, you can erase the search history. Please note the Exit Safe button will not automatically erase your browser history. You can follow the instructions below on how to erase your search history. You may also need to clear any history from search toolbars, such as Google, AOL or Yahoo Answers. To do so, check the instructions on the individual toolbars.

How to erase your browser history

Look at the toolbar at the top of the page and select ‘Tools’. There will be a dropdown menu. Select the item that says ‘Options’, ‘Internet Options’ or ‘History’. It will open up a separate small window with lots of tabs. Find ‘History’ or ‘Browsing History’. Depending on your browser version, you may find it under the ‘General’ tab or the ‘Privacy’ tab. Select ‘Delete’ or ‘Clear your recent history’. This will remove any record of web pages you have visited. You will generally have a choice as to what you delete. Keep saved passwords as not to alert to your abuser that the history has been erased.

 

Other tips

• Avoid using Facebook walls or newsfeeds to communicate, send private messages instead.
• If you do post status updates make sure they are not specific about where you are, who you are with and what you are doing.
• Create more than one email address and use them for different purposes.

 

Phone safety


• Always keep your phone locked with a pass code only you know.
• Turn off the location setting on your phone so that the GPS on your phone doesn’t reveal where you are at any given time and others can’t track your phone. On an iPhone you can do this by clicking on the settings icon, then clicking on privacy and then selecting to turn off location services. Androids may be different but you can try turning off the location services by going into settings, security and location, and then turning location services off. If you are unsure, ask a phone retailer to show you.
• If you have received harassing or threatening messages, keep them as these can be used as evidence in court. Take your phone to the Police or lawyer so that they can document the evidence.


For more information about ‘Safety Planning Around Technology’ or to order copies of the booklet visit http://wesnet.org.au/safetynet.
You can also find information at http://www.cdvs.com.au/safety/computer-safety/

Adapted from ‘Safety Planning Around Technology, A Guide For Survivors of Domestic Violence or Dating Violence’ booklet published by the Safety Net Australia Project, an initiative of the Women’s Services Network (WESNET), 2012. Adapted for Australia by WESNET with kind permission from the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence.