Tech vs Abuse

For someone experiencing domestic abuse, it can feel like every aspect of their world is controlled by the abuser – and the online world is no different. Although technology can help victims to access information and support, it can also provide abusers with even more ways to threaten and control. We now live our lives online more than ever, and simply advising victims to remove themselves from social media sites isn't enough. As part of the Tech vs Abuse initiative, SafeLives undertook a six month research project to understand the potential opportunities, gaps and risks for technology in the context of domestic abuse – alongside partners ChaynSnook and Comic Relief.

Read the report

Together with Chayn and Snook, we carried out research with over 200 survivors and 350 professionals working to support those affected by domestic abuse. We looked at the ways in which technology can be a tool for an abuser, the areas where technology could help to support victims, and examples of helpful technology that already exists. 


Download the report: Tech vs Abuse

Next steps

Based on the research, Comic Relief and the research team have created five key design challenges. We believe that if addressed safely and effectively, these solutions would make the most immediate difference to people affected by domestic abuse. These challenges are:

  • Fifteen minute window
  • Effective real-time support services
  • Safer digital footprint
  • Accessible legal and financial information
  • Realising it's abuse

To enable innovation in these five areas, Comic Relief is offering funding, with applications open until 13th March 2017. For more information about the grants available and how to apply, visit the Comic Relief website.