This Valentine’s Day, Don’t Just Think About “Lip lock” But Give “Data Lock” A Thought Too

This Valentine’s Day, Don’t Just Think About “Lip lock” But Give “Data Lock” A Thought Too

Love is in the air, for Valentine’s Day is near… And why just Valentine’s Day? There are a series of “Days” devoted to lovers, viz. Rose day, Propose Day and Chocolate Day!! So how have Indians responded to this global fad? How do they handle their love life online? What effects do new relationships and, God forbid, bitter break-ups have on their online behaviour?

To find out more about the triangular dynamics among Love, relationships and Technology, McAfee commissioned a survey in India to study the pitfalls of sharing personal data in relationships. The survey findings reveal the low privacy levels maintained by those who form relationships and the one serious danger of a breakup- the leak of privacy online.

Let me share some interesting findings from the McAfee study:

  • Nearly 63% Indians share their Bank Account Details and 47% share their Passwords with their partners
  • 77% of adults have had their personal content leaked to others without their permission
  • 3 in 10 ex-partners have threatened that they would expose risqué photos of their ex online
  • 53% Indians still plan to send sexy or romantic photos to their partners via email, text and social media on Valentine’s Day



How did the partners obtain each others’ online details? Simple, when people are in love they do trust each other completely. And they should, for trust is the basis of a strong relationship. However, trust is build up over time and some people are naturally curious and pry into other’s affairs. This can have serious repercussions.

There are many reasons why your partner may take a sneak peak into your accounts – it may be sheer curiosity but it may also be due to suspicion, malice or intent to harm. The survey reveals that respondents check their partner’s social media pages, bank accounts and even emails and text messages! Not only that, some continue to check their exes Facebook account.

Now why do jilted lovers leak details/spited their ex online? Here are some of the reasons cited:

  • 38% said because they were lied to
  • 48% did so because they were cheated
  • 41% cited break-up
  • 23% reacted thus as their exes had called off the wedding
  • 15% stated that their action was in response to their partner’s posting pics with someone else

One good thing noted was that most Indians are tech-savvy and know well to protect their devices. 86% protect their smartphones with a password, while 78% regularly back up or save the content on their smartphones. Moreover, almost all respondents said that they regularly delete any personal or intimate text messages emails and photos regularly.

A few safety tips to ensure your online safety include:

1.      Keep a lock on your data: password protect important documents, smartphones
2.      Do not share bank/e-mail/social networking site login details at the first flush of love. Give time for trust to grow
3.      Delete all sensitive/embarrassing contents on your cellphone/mails regularly
4.      Change all passwords and hint questions immediately after a breakup


I don’t think it’s a good idea to befriend your ex on your social media account. Maintain a cordial relation if you want to, but keep your privacy. That’s safer for both your dignity and data.

You can visit the following sites for more information: 

Happy Valentine’s Day folks!

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