In the “old days,” an individual with a grudge or related animosity against an ex-spouse or domestic partner might hire a detective to conduct behind-the-scenes surveillance on that party. Classic Hollywood fare features scores of movie scenes showing a “private eye” sneaking into a home to tap a phone or slouching in a car outside an apartment endlessly smoking cigarettes and with a camera in hand.

Times have dramatically changed for individuals seeking “new ways to maintain access to and control over their victims’ lives,” duly notes a national publication spotlighting today’s plethora of high-tech apps and devices. Individuals with bad intent can ditch the hired help and be their own detectives.

Although that is problematic in a general sense, it can be an especially pronounced concern in the family law realm, where emotions and persistent anger can run hot. Many divorces and separations in Arizona and nationally are relatively civil affairs, of course, but others are the antithesis of sunshine and good will. Some former partners can be vindictive and even dangerous.

And they are aided appreciably and even in a truly scary way (the above-cited article from Slate uses the term “creepy”) by modern-day tech assists. A veritable boatload of new gadgets and apps easily enable them to spy on third parties who don’t have a clue that they are being stalked in 21th-century fashion.

Such new ability to remain an unwanted presence in another person’s life following the termination of a marriage or other live-in arrangement can obviously yield dire consequences. We will have a bit more to say on what Slate terms “a [new] world of tech-facilitated stalking methods” in our next blog post.