Surveillance and stalkers: how the Internet supercharges gendered violence

85% of domestic violence shelters work with women who have been GPS-tracked by their abusers; 75% have clients who were attacked with hidden mobile surveillance apps; cops routinely steal and share nude selfies from the phones of women pulled over in traffic stops, and NSA spies used agency's massive, illegal surveillance apparatus to stalk women they were sexually attracted to, a practice that was dubbed "LOVEINT."

With this information in the background, FBI Director Comey's insistence that Apple's new iPhone encryption will undermine law enforcement becomes less farce, and more tragedy. As women's shelters across the country have learned, privacy tools are not just for journalists, whistleblowers, spies, and criminals.

About 12 million people are victims of intimate partner violence each year. Privacy is about power, and undermining privacy serves the powerful at the cost of the powerless, even at home. For an unknown number of people, surveillance is not an exotic threat, a national story, a geopolitical game. For them, surveillance begins at home.

Surveillance Begins at Home [Sarah Jeong/Forbes]

(via Skepchick)