Stalkerware is a category of software that allows a person to spy on another, often by installing the software on the target’s mobile device without their knowledge. Such apps, which often masquerade as parental control apps or anti-theft solutions, can monitor Internet activity, track a user’s whereabouts and record audio and video, among other functions.
Kaspersky recently commissioned a survey to gauge public perception as it relates to privacy – specifically digital stalking – among those in a relationship. The results might surprise you.
Among the more than 21,000 people surveyed across 21 countries who are in a relationship or have been in the past, a staggering 30 percent believe it is alright to monitor their partner’s digital activities. Within this subset, more than half said that doing so was only appropriate in certain situations.
What constitutes an acceptable situation? Survey results show that 64 percent of those who believe it is alright to monitor their partner say they would do so if they believed they were being unfaithful while 63 percent said they would do so if it was related to safety. Half in this group would also spy on their mate if they believed they were involved in criminal activity.
Nearly three in four (74 percent) of those polled say they have never been stalked by means of technology.
How would you react if you found stalkerware on your device? Most (83 percent) of those polled said they would confront their partner if they found a monitoring app installed on their device without their consent, although the report notes that standing up to a partner in this situation might only escalate the risk that a stalkerware victim faces.