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Online impersonation in Texas is an internet-based crime with growing relevance in family law. Perpetrators are increasingly impersonating spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends and “other” men or women online to gain leverage in divorce cases, check up on paramours or just for spite.

In 2009, the Texas Legislature passed the online impersonation statute (Texas Penal Code Section 33.07) after multiple incidents of people using social media to pretend to be someone else with the intent to harass, stalk or defraud. For instance, a spurned lover or angry ex-husband might create a fake website in an ex’s name, detailing a number of sex acts she might perform, and include her phone number as a way to get back at her.

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