The internet is an amazing tool of resources, knowledge, games, and socialization all in one. For most users, the internet provides entertainment, information, and a connection to friends and loved ones. For an abuser, the internet may be the tool needed to remain in control of their victim.
The internet can be controlled to an extent, but it is important that there are programs designed to obtain passwords (see Keystroke Loggers) and ways to gain access to accounts. Taking the necessary precautions to prevent this is highly suggested.
SOCIAL MEDIAS It has been said that letter writing has been dissolving in light of the quickness of chats, emails, and social medias. Facebook is currently the fastest growing and largest of the social medias. Within Facebook, a person can post statuses (how you are feeling, what you are doing or planning to do, who you are with), upload photos in albums, and even inform others where you are simply by activating certain features. Games, applications, and more have all been intertwined into this media.
With all the information that can be put onto the internet, it is important to remember that anything that was once on the internet, will always be there, somewhere. It is never truly erased from the world wide web. For this reason, the first and foremost action a person should take on any social media is to evaluate what you are sharing with the world. Is the locator activated on your page? Are you sharing where you are going this afternoon, or who are going to be with? Have you put pictures on your page that show where you frequent? These are all ways an abuser can find information about you and make contact with you.
In addition to being aware of what you post and share, privacy can be controlled on social medias as well. Below are links to information on Facebook. Twitter, Myspace, and Google+ to walk you through how to set your privacy settings.
EMAILS Electronic mail or Email has become one of the most widely used forms of internet communication. Email hosts such as gmail, hotmail, msn, and yahoo allow for individuals to communication with family, friends, business associates and school peers. Email Accounts do require passwords, but this is not always secure. It is important to review the privacy policies and set up of your email account.
When setting a password for your account, the characters used are important. Having a strong password that is comprised of lower case and upper case letters, numbers and symbols makes it difficult for hackers to put together the right combination of characters. Here is a link that can guide you in creating a strong password.
Another thing to remember with email communication is that there is no such thing as a secure message. Information can be received by another party who access to your account or to the person you are sending information to. Keyloggers on any computer can access the information as well. It is best to communicate vital information in person or in a phone call that is not being monitored.
ONLINE FILE STORAGE Saving files on an internet file storage can help to secure documents, photos, and other vital information that could be lost if a computer hard drive is damaged, destroyed or compromised. It is important to again have a secure site, strong password, and understand that with the right tools, it can still be accessed (keyloggers).