Technology and personal safety
Where will you keep this directory? With a friend? A safety deposit box? At work? In a hollowed-out book or a binder labeled “Recipes?” Store all “sensitive” paperwork in a safe location!
Hidden web cams can be installed in your home for security purposes, but they can also monitor your activity. Be careful and discreet! Do your very best not to arouse suspicion.
Your own activity on your computer can be monitored and traced, so do online research at a library or on a trusted friend’s computer. Regardless of your location, your partner can still trace you if you text him from your laptop. Be careful of revealing your activities/location on Facebook or other social media.
Cell phone activity can be monitored and an “app” can be placed on your cell phone to track your location in real time and to “clone” and forward copies of every text you send or receive to your abuser’s phone. Your caller ID feature can be “hacked” by your abuser to make you think you are receiving a call from your mother, for example, or a trusted friend, when in fact it is your abuser. Consider getting a new phone without a contract, one that is charged up with a phone card to avoid a paper trail.
Calls to hotlines are completely confidential. You don’t even have to give your name. However, the phone numbers will appear on your phone bill. Be aware of which phone will be charged and who will see the bill.
Do not tell your partner anything in advance about your plans to leave him. You risk your physical safety and you risk losing access to all bank accounts. The most dangerous times for you will be when he first learns of your plans to end the relationship and for the period afterwards ranging anywhere from 2 months to 2 years.