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Domestic and family violence

eSafety provides resources and information to help people deal with technology-facilitated abuse, so that everyone can enjoy the benefits of being online and connected.

We include tips on how to protect yourself and your family and stay safe. 

If you are experiencing domestic and family violence, safe access to technology is important, so you can stay connected to your family and friends and get information and support. 

Research shows that technology-facilitated abuse has become a key part of domestic and family violence.1

1Woodlock, Delanie (2015) ReCharge: Women’s Technology Safety, Legal Resources, Research and Training, Women’s Legal Service NSW, Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria and WESNET, Collingwood.

On this page:

What does technology have to do with domestic and family violence?

More than 99% of Australian victims of domestic and family violence have also experienced technology-facilitated abuse (also known as tech abuse).

Tech abuse is an extension of coercion and harassment in situations of domestic and family violence. 

There are four main forms of this abuse: harassment, stalking, impersonation and threats. It can include when a partner or ex-partner:

  • sends a lot of abusive messages
  • makes threatening phone calls over and over
  • creates fake social media accounts and makes hurtful posts about you
  • takes over internet accounts and locks you out of them – such as email, social media and bank accounts
  • shares, or threatens to share, intimate images or videos of you without your permission
  • tracks where you are and hides cameras that film you.

Many of these behaviours are crimes under Australian law and can be reported to the police before going to court. These laws cover things such as stalking, sending threatening emails and texts, using tracking apps and spyware, online bullying and sharing intimate images or videos without consent.



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Why women?

Domestic, family and sexual violence occurs across all ages, and all socioeconomic and demographic groups, but predominantly affects women and children.

Around 70% of the online harm reports that eSafety receives are from Australian women and girls.

Women are also nearly three times more likely than a man to have experienced violence by a partner.

Discover how eSafety is developing resources and professional development for women to prevent online abuse and promote positive experiences online.

Find a support service that is right for you

Our counselling and support services page lists many other services that can help you. We can also connect you with legal help.


Staying safe

If you are in Australia and feeling unsafe right now, call the police on Triple Zero (000) or contact 1800RESPECT (1800 737 732). Remember your safety is important. If an abusive person learns that you are seeking resources and information, their abusive behaviour may get worse. Learn more and connect with support.