HALIBURTON, ON – An organization dedicated to helping women and families in need is trying to protect them online too.

YWCA Peterborough – Haliburton is offering safety tips for anyone that might be dealing with abusive situations online or over text and email.

According to YWCA, If you believe that someone is monitoring your phone or computer, it is likely that they are.

To protect yourself in that scenario, it is a good idea to keep up appearances by using the apps and things that you normally use, then use a safer more secure computer to look for ways out of that situation. Whether that be creating “an escape plan”, looking for new jobs, places to live, and or asking for help.

Although emails and texts are sent privately, YWCA says they are not confidential and if you are looking to talk about abuse or danger in your life, the best course of action is to call the crisis support line, not send texts or emails.

If you need to text or email, use an account or email that your abuser doesn’t know about. It might even be safer to use a public computer at a library or community centre, or at a trusted friend’s house.

YWCA encourages that any person experiencing abuse should make a point of “covering your email tracks” by deleting all emails and clearing out the trash bin, changing your password at least once a month, and printing out any threatening email to use as evidence.

For overall internet use, YWCA suggests using private browser mode so your history does not show up if someone else opens up the internet browser to see what you were doing.

Anyone in need of support through abuse or poverty can connect with the YWCA’s various branches.

A downloadable PDF on how to protect your phone from being monitored can be found by clicking here.