Sunday, 3 June 2012

iPad video being used to spy on ex - lovers

PARENTS are using iPad video calls with their children to snoop on the lives of their estranged or former spouses.

Applications such as Apple's FaceTime and Skype, which offer free video calls on tablets and smartphones, have been cited in custody cases where family lawyers have claimed they have been misused for "intrusive purposes".
In one case a father asked his child to "give him a tour" of his former wife's new home. In another a mother walked into her living room wearing only a nightie, to find her former husband staring at her from the screen of her child's iPad.
Louise Halford, a partner at Pannone solicitors in Britain, said her firm had seen a steady stream of cases in recent months.

"I'd never heard of this issue before this year but it seems a lot of children got smartphones and iPads for Christmas and in all the cases I've handled they were presents from the dad," she said.
Ms Halford said that while most video calls were innocent, in some cases "the estranged partner has a history of obsessive or controlling behaviour".
One mother, who was given custody of her teenage son when she divorced seven years ago, said the constant video calls between father and son on the boy's smartphone had become akin to "inviting her ex-husband back into her home".
The woman, who asked not to be named, said: "I want to be able to walk round my own house without seeing my ex-husband's face or (hear his) voice.
"It's not like the telephone, where you can hold it to your ear.
"Video gives them a window into your day-to-day life."
Advances in technology have led to an increase in video call applications on smartphones and computers.
Apple's iPads and iPhones have cameras enabling them to be used for video calls.
Annemarie McAvoy, a New York academic who had lost custody of her son, was ordered by a US court in January to take the boy's iPhone away because it was claimed she was using it to pry into the father's life.
Ms Halford also cited a case in March where an order was made to restrict video calls between a child and parent to one room of the house.

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