Domestic abuse

We understand that domestic abuse can have a devastating effect on the lives of individuals and their families.

We provide two support services for men, women and children who need advice and protection from domestic abuse:

Our services enable clients to make informed choices about their safety, health, housing and other identified outcome needs.

Our support is innovative, flexible and person-centred for men, women and children who need advice and protection from domestic abuse. We work with those affected by abuse and others involved in their support to ensure we promote maximum choice and control while ensuring safety and security.

We can provide:

  • Support to safely move into local or nationally-based refuges
  • One-to-one emotional and practical support for men, women and children
  • Advocacy
  • Linking children into education and activities
  • Safety planning
  • Group work
  • Links to the community, training and activities
  • Connections to legal and benefits advice
  • Refuge accommodation
  • Support through the criminal justice system
  • Support delivered irrespective of whether someone wants to stay in the relationship or not.

Staying safe online

If you are concerned about an abuser monitoring or discovering your browsing history, have a read of the following tips to erase your browsing history.

The purple EXIT SITE button to the right will quickly take you off this page, to the BBC News homepage – but you will need to delete your browsing history afterwards.

Browsing privately

One effective way to cover your tracks is to ensure you don’t have a history of the sites you visit to begin with. Any websites viewed in a private browsing window will not appear in your browser’s history, web cache or cookies. Online services may still be able to monitor your activity (and use it to, for example, provide personalised ads) but it won’t leave a trace on your computer.

If you do this, always check you’re in a private browsing window before visiting a site. Check below to find instructions for your browser.

Internet Explorer

Click on the round cog at the top right of the window, then go to Safety -> Tools - > “InPrivate Browsing”.

Firefox

Click on the three horizontal lines at the top right of the window, then click on “New Private Window”.

Chrome

Click on the three dots at the top right of the window, then click on “New Incognito Window”.

Safari

On a Mac: Click File -> “New Private Window”.

On an iPhone/iPad: Click the two squares at the bottom (iPhone) or top (iPad) of the window, then look for the “Private” button.

Deleting browsing history

To find your browsing history, click hold Ctrl and press H – or Ctrl+Alt+H for Opera. Find any entries you want to remove, right click on them and choose Delete. This won’t affect logins so if you have accounts set up on any websites (eg Facebook, Amazon), remember to log out of any you don’t want the abuser to know about.

If you have any search engine toolbars installed in the browser itself (ie always there, regardless of website), check they haven’t recorded your searches. They will have their own methods of deleting their search history that you can look up.

Email

Threatening or harassing emails from your abuser can be saved and/or printed as evidence of abuse. Emails you’ve written will be stored in the Sent/Outbox folders (or Drafts if unfinished).

If you don’t want anyone to see an email on your computer, print a copy if needed and then delete it. Reply emails will usually have the original email attached to them, whether on your computer or printed out.

Remember to also delete anything you don’t want from Deleted Items, if you’re using a dedicated email program like Outlook or Thunderbird.

Browse safely

One alternative to Private Browsing is to use other computers e.g. a friend’s laptop, or PCs at your local library to avoid leaving a trace on one of your own devices. Even deleting your Internet history won’t necessarily remove all traces of activity and this is one way around that.

Don’t neglect Internet security though – sensitive data like online banking is best handled on your own device.

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