A new report shares the results of a survey on technology abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over 1,000 victim advocates and legal systems professionals participated in the survey, which was conducted from December 2020 to January 2021.
The Tech Abuse in the Pandemic & Beyond: Reflections from the Field report found that harassment, limiting access to technology, and surveillance increased during the pandemic. Phones, social media, and messaging were the technologies most commonly misused as a tactic of abuse. The report also found that survivors’ lack of access to technology was a barrier to accessing services and support.
There is an increasing need to raise awareness of technology abuse and address the social inequities that create barriers to accessing technology, safety, justice, and healing for survivors and their communities. Despite these challenges, the pandemic also revealed opportunities for programs to use technology to reach victims by providing virtual services in the future.
The report was produced by the Safety Net Project at the National Network to End Domestic Violence, through a cooperative agreement with OVC.
Visit the Safety Net Project website to discover toolkits, trainings, and other resources on responding to the technology and privacy needs of survivors.