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Divorced Couples Play Detective, Turn To Illegal Snooping To Win Divorce Cases

When a relationship come to an end, there’s no doubt that it could be a painful experience for both parties – no matter who is right or wrong. Things could be even harder if you are married and with children. The splitting process could turn ugly just because there just too many things to be settled – custody of the children, properties separation, alimony, and so on.

The person that was once most important, now becomes your biggest enemy. And in an attempt to beat their biggest enemies, many in Singapore have turned to technology tools and some even used illegal snooping to collect evidences against their spouses, according to a report by The Straits Times.

Image credit: tomcompelandblog
Image Credit: tomcompelandblog

Family lawyer Rajan Chettiar told the newspaper that eight out of ten cases involved computer-generated evidence. In the past, the evidences used in court used to be in traditional documents and letters.

In some cases, the paper also said that spouses even hired computer experts to hack their partners’ email accounts or installs a spyware in their devices such as personal computer and mobile phone just so they could get the upper hand in the divorce case.

“Increasingly, clients are also asking lawyers how to hire hackers, or how to get their spouses to delete material obtained through underhanded means,” the paper wrote.

Another lawyer Gloria James-Civetta told the paper that she used to have only one or two cases in which her clients fell prey to hacking, but this year she already had six. She added that if she suspected the opponent party was using illegally obtained evidences against her client, she will not hesitate to object in the court and try her best to prove that the evidences were obtained in an illegal way.

In Singapore, under the Computer Misuse and Cybersecurity Act, anyone who gains access to a computer without the permission of the owner to retrieve data or programs could be fined or jailed.

Divorce
Image credit: divorcelawyerSingapore

While the number of marriages in Singapore had drop from 27,936 marriages last year to 26,254 this year, the divorce cases had increase from 7,237 cases last year to 7,525 cases this year.

Total of Marriages, Divorces and Annulments in Singapore in the Last Five Years

Year Total Marriages Total Divorces and Annulments
2009 26,081 7,280
2010 24,363 7,338
2011 27,258 7,604
2012 27,936 7,237
2013 26,254 7,525

Source: Singapore Department of Statistics

James-Civetta shared one of the cases she handled where the husband had hired a private investigator to install a spyware on her client’s computer at home during their mediation.

“While this is a simpler case where the couple is simply fighting over the grounds of divorce to save face, the stakes could be much higher if assets or custody of children is involved.

“That is why some spouses may turn desperate and resort to illegal ways of gaining the upper hand,” she said.

Sherlock-MacBook1
You wouldn’t want this guy snooping through your laptop.

Another lawyer, Lee Terk Yang, said that while it is illegal to hack into someone’s computer, but there are still some grey areas under law.

“If the wife has previously given her husband her password to her mobile phone or if he happens to see something by chance when she leaves it around, does it count as hacking?” he asked.

No matter what cases you are in, divorce or other cases, just remember such snooping, spying, and hacking or whatever ways to retrieve your personal data without your permission are illegal. So, don’t say we do not warn you.

 

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