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James Mather
James Mather,
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 22629
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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I accidently left my hotmail open on the shared iPAD and my

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I accidently left my hotmail open on the shared iPAD and my husband from whom i am recently separated looked through it and forwarded some of my private emails to his personal account. These contain private and confidential information relating to a friend of mine. He is very upset. Does my husband have any right to do this? And even though the computer account was open he conducted a search through it. Does he have any right to do this?
Hello, I am Law Denning and I am a practising solicitor in a High
Street practice. I have been an expert on this website in UK law since 2008.
During that time, as you appreciate, I have answered thousand's of questions from satisfied users on a variety of subjects.
Because we are all in practice with clients and court and other users, I might not always respond in
minutes, particularly evenings and weekends. Please bear with me in that case.

It is my pleasure to try and assist you with this today. Please bear with me while I gather some further information from you in order for me to be able to advise you fully.

How do you know he has done this?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

He told me that he had looked through it a few weeks ago. And last night he told me that he had a copy of the information.


It was a solicitors document containing custody rights for a child he does not know and has never met. Its a friend of mine who wanted advice from me.

There is good news and bad news.
The good news is that this is an offence/a criminal offence, under the Misuse of Computers Act 1990.
The bad news is that you probably have more chance of winning the lottery when getting the police or CPS to take an interest in prosecuting your husband.
It does constitute unreasonable behaviour, but the reality is is very little you can do about it other than to seek a court order in the civil court preventing him from doing it again.
By all means refer the matter to the police but don’t be expecting them to clap him in irons and send him off to botany Bay. They should speak to your husband about it and just that warning, might stop him doing it again
Unless you want to risk the money on a court application, it might be one of those things that you would be better off biting the bullet on. I’m sorry, I appreciate that this is not the answer you wanted but there is no point in me misleading you. I have a duty to advise you truthfully and honestly, even if that answer is unfavourable for you.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I have no desire to prosecute him but he has repeatedly acted in this fashion and I wanted to check legally if it constitutes over stepping the mark because it really feels like an invasion of privacy.


Is there a clause within the particular act which i could refer to?


Many thanks for your help

It is right at the very beginning. Here it is, section 1

let him have a copy of the legislation page.
Tell him that you have been advised to go to the police with a view to bringing a criminal prosecution. Obviously, do not tell him that you have been told that you have little chance of them bringing a prosecution.
Incidentally, if this was in the United States, would be prosecuted as they take this much more seriously even at this relatively minor level.
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