How your Digital Data can Affect your Divorce

StockSnap_A8XB50N7G1.jpgPeople going through divorce typically prioritize protection: protection of themselves, their assets, and their future. Unfortunately, there are common missteps people make that jeopardize the very things they want to protect.

For instance, your digital data and behaviors can play a powerful role in your divorce, but many people fail to take control of their online life. This lapse in judgment can cause a number of problems, including the few we discuss below.

  • Giving your ex access – As this CNBC article notes, you and your soon-to-be ex may know each other’s passwords, sync your devices, and share certain accounts. As such, your ex could continue to access your email, social media profiles, and other sensitive accounts and use the information they find against you during divorce proceedings.
  • Contradicting your statements – People often present themselves differently online than they do in real life. During a divorce, this can be problematic if your online persona and accounts contradict the things you say during mediation or inside a court room.
  • Exacerbating tension – Whether your ex reads your email, learns something on social media, or sees your profile on a dating site, he or she can become upset (or more upset) by your digital data. This can have a very real impact on your divorce if what he or she learns causes anger, fear, frustration or jealousy.

There are some simple ways to avoid these issues. You can change your passwords, adjust your privacy settings, and separate your shared accounts. Make sure you stop syncing your devices to one your ex might use. You can be especially mindful when sharing anything personal online, and avoid any behaviors or statements that call your real-life statements into question.

Bad-mouthing the judge online doesn’t help your cause, either.

Protecting your digital data during divorce starts with understanding why you should protect it. Once you appreciate this, you can take steps to ensure it does not adversely affect the divorce process or your life after divorce.