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DuPage County divorce lawyerIf you are like most people living in the United States in the 21st century, you use social media on a daily basis. Apps and websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok allow you to connect with friends and family, follow news stories, and communicate with others who share your interests. However, this level of connection may also have its drawbacks, especially if you are going through a divorce. As you go through the process of ending your marriage, you should take steps to protect your privacy and avoid any issues that could affect your divorce case.

Social Media and Privacy Concerns

During the divorce process, making sure your personal information is private is likely to be a major concern. If you and your spouse have shared a computer or other electronic devices, you may have had access to each other’s social media accounts. To ensure that your spouse cannot log into your account to view your personal information or make posts in your name, you will want to change your passwords, and you may also want to update your account settings to make sure you can only log in from certain devices.

You should also be aware of privacy settings on the posts you make. While you may be able to restrict access to certain posts so they can only be viewed by your close friends or family members, you should be prepared for the possibility that your spouse could still view this information. For example, a mutual friend may decide to take a screenshot of a message or photo you posted and send it to your spouse. To make sure your privacy is protected, you may want to avoid posting or sharing any information that you would not want your spouse to see.

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Should You Worry About the Privacy of Your Divorce Record?Many people do not realize that the court hearings for their divorce are part of the public record, meaning that anyone can access records on your divorce after it is completed. Everything you say during the hearings and the various documents that you submit is part of that public record. With records being digitized, it is more convenient for people to request and receive court records. If you are concerned about your privacy, you should discuss with your attorney whether you can seal your divorce record from the public.

What Is in the Record?

Your public divorce record does not include sensitive information such as your Social Security Number or bank account numbers. However, it may include details that are professionally damaging or personally embarrassing, such as:

  • Your financial history and debt record
  • Your business assets and interests
  • Admissions of substance abuse or mental health problems
  • Accusations of domestic violence or child abuse
  • Personal arguments between you and your spouse

All of this is information that could hurt you if someone such as a potential employer discovered it when conducting a background check on you.

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Protecting Your Electronic Communications from Your SpouseSome people going through a divorce resort to eavesdropping on their spouses in hopes of obtaining sensitive information that can be used in the case. With the proliferation of electronic communications, there are several ways to surreptitiously track someone’s correspondences and online history. Illinois law states that evidence obtained through eavesdropping is inadmissible in court in most cases. However, you do not want your former spouse to be able to monitor your electronic devices, even if you have nothing to hide. Electronic monitoring can be a way of embarrassing or asserting control over a former spouse. Cybersecurity has become an essential part of protecting your privacy during your divorce.

Uncoupling Yourself

It is common for spouses to have shared online accounts, including:

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