What is cyber-surveillance?
Cyber-surveillance is when a person uses “smart” or “connected” devices that communicate through a data network to monitor people or places. This type of connected technology has also been called the “Internet of Things” (IoT). Devices used for cyber-surveillance are generally connected to each other and to a device or app that can control them. For example, you may have a television connected to the Internet that you can control from an app on your cell phone or tablet or appliances like coffee machines can be connected to a network and controlled remotely with another device (such as your computer or phone). Devices may be connected through a home network, the Internet and WiFi, Bluetooth, or other means. These devices and systems offer tools you can use to increase your own safety and convenience.
However, cyber-surveillance also allows connected devices to play a role in how people and places are monitored. An abuser could use his/her computer (or other device that is connected to the Internet, such as a phone or tablet) to hack into your devices. Then, an abuser may misuse these devices and the systems that control them to monitor, harass, threaten, or harm you.