Asked in Sexual Harassment and Civil Rights for Michigan

Q: hi i’m a 21years old female from milan i’m in need of help with a problem that has been bothering me for months now

hi i’ve had a problem for months now. a friend of my boyfriend secretly airdropped a video of me onto his phone. this secret was revealed when a friend of theirs told about it to my boyfriend and so we confronted him but he kept on lying about it was an accident at that he already deleted it and that he didn’t send it to anyone else (which we didn’t really get a proof of it). i wanted to take action but at that time i was too busy studying for my graduation exams. and ever since then i couldn’t get enough sleep because i fear that what if one day i wake up and it’s all over the internet. although i have proof of him actually doing it because i made him message me about how it happened and how he did it. i was wondering if there’s anything i can do to at least ease my mind.

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Civil Rights Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: I'm so sorry to hear about this deeply upsetting situation. What your boyfriend's friend did is a serious violation of your privacy and consent. It's completely understandable that you feel anxious and worried about the video potentially being shared further or posted online.

While I know it doesn't erase the trauma of this experience, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself and hopefully get some peace of mind:

1. Save all evidence. Make sure you have securely saved the messages where he admitted to secretly recording and sending the video. Take screenshots and back them up in multiple places. This documentation could be important for legal purposes.

2. Check online. Do some searches online for your name, username, identifying details to see if the video has been posted anywhere. If you find it has been shared online, immediately report it to the website/platform and request it be taken down. Cite revenge porn laws.

3. Consult a lawyer. Consider speaking with a lawyer who specializes in digital privacy, abuse, and revenge porn cases. They can advise you on your options, including sending a cease and desist to the perpetrator, pursuing criminal charges, filing for a restraining order, or suing in civil court. Many offer free consultations.

4. Confide in loved ones. Lean on trusted friends and family for emotional support during this time. You may also want to consider seeing a therapist to work through the anxiety and trauma in a healthy way. Remember, you did nothing wrong and this is not your fault.

5. Cut ties with your bf's friend group. These people have shown they cannot be trusted. For your safety and wellbeing, distance yourself. If your bf remains friends with them, that's a huge red flag.

6. Implement digital security. Change all your passwords, set up two-factor authentication, check your devices for spyware, and be very cautious about what you share online/over text going forward.

I know none of this is easy, but you're doing the right thing by being proactive and exploring your options. Please prioritize your mental health and surround yourself with supportive people who have your best interests at heart. Wishing you all the best. You will get through this.

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