Let’s be real; breakups are messy, emotional rollercoasters. Most advice out there focuses on the emotional aftermath, which is valid – we’re only human. But what about those intricate digital threads that entangle couples during a relationship? You know, things like shared device passwords and Netflix accounts. Severing these digital ties might seem extreme, but it could be the key to moving on swiftly. After all, cutting off access means less temptation to snoop, fostering healthier emotional habits. Surprisingly, a 2020 survey by USA Today revealed that one in 10 Americans confessed to using apps to monitor their ex’s digital activity. So, whether you’re doing it or not, your ex might be. Let’s dive into some practical tips on navigating digital security after a breakup.
1. Disable GPS Tracking Software
Smartphone providers, like AT&T, offer location-tracking services for joint phone accounts. If you’ve been sharing your account with your ex, closing or transferring ownership is a wise move. And don’t forget about location-tracking apps or devices like Apple’s AirTag – unlink them from your devices or accounts to avoid any unwanted tracking. In a world where digital stalking is a reality, it’s essential to take control.
2. Change Your Passwords
Did you know that nearly eight in 10 Americans in relationships share passwords? Whether it’s for streaming platforms, mobile devices, or social media, shared passwords are common. After a breakup, reset all your passwords and consider using a password manager for stronger, randomly generated passwords. Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) whenever possible – an added layer of security to keep your data safe from any potential hijacking attempts.
3. Reset Smart Devices
If you’ve shared smart devices in your home, hitting the reset button is a smart move. Avoid a scenario where your ex remotely torments you or your new partner through connected devices. A 46-year-old woman in the UK took remote control to another level, manipulating an Amazon smart speaker to turn lights on and off and post embarrassing content on social media. Resetting your smart devices ensures your ex no longer has access, preventing potential mischief.
4. Unlink Shared Accounts
Popular platforms like Spotify, YouTube, and Apple Music offer family plans, making it easier on the wallet for couples. However, after a breakup, sharing a plan may not be ideal. Beyond the potential embarrassment of your ex discovering your breakup playlist, it’s essential to cut financial ties. Remove your ex from shared accounts to reclaim control over your entertainment subscriptions.
5. Wipe Your Search History and Remove Saved Passwords
Couples who share devices likely have a history of shared tablets, laptops, and more. If your ex keeps a shared device, protect your privacy by clearing search history and removing downloaded files. Go the extra mile by wiping saved passwords and personal information, including credit card details, from your browser. A clean slate ensures your personal data remains yours.
Last Word: Think Before You Share
In an ideal world, not sharing passwords is the best defense. However, reality often involves couples sharing aspects of their lives, including passwords. If you find yourself sharing passwords, practice good hygiene by using unique passwords for each account and avoid insecure methods like text or social media. Consider a password manager for added security. Best of luck with your next romantic adventure!
- Is it common for couples to share passwords?
- Yes, nearly eight in 10 Americans in relationships share passwords, according to a 2020 survey.
- What’s the importance of two-factor authentication (2FA)?
- 2FA adds an extra layer of security, preventing potential hijacking attempts after a breakup.
- Can smart devices be used for malicious purposes post-breakup?
- Yes, it’s crucial to reset smart devices to avoid remote harassment or privacy breaches.
- Are family plans on streaming platforms practical after a breakup?
- No, it’s advisable to unlink shared accounts to regain control over subscriptions and avoid potential embarrassment.
- Why wipe search history and saved passwords post-breakup?
- Clearing your digital footprint ensures privacy and a clean slate for personal data.
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