Netflix’s latest true crime documentary Can I Tell You a Secret? tells the horrifying story of one of the most prolific cyber stalkers in UK history, Matthew Hardy.


The two-parter explores Hardy's crimes and the impact of his actions on victims spanning across decades.

One individual targeted by Hardy was Abby Furness, who features in the docuseries and discusses how she was stalked by the criminal.

"I think I have a bit of disassociation to the whole thing, and I actually blocked the whole thing out of my brain," Abby said of her experience filming the series in a Q&A.

"I didn't realise until we had to do the day story, where you sit there and you have to talk through the whole thing."

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She continued: "Even though I knew what had happened, and there was evidence, and I was seeing everything in front of me, and I knew the story because I lived it, I forgot bits happened and just kind of blanked it out."

So, what exactly happened to Abby and where is she now? Read on for everything you need to know about the subject of Can I Tell You a Secret? on Netflix.

What happened to Abby Furness?

As seen in the Netflix documentary, Abby was one of many women who was targeted by Hardy – and whose world he turned upside down.

Hardy started stalking Furness in 2019. He impersonated her online and started messaging friends and relatives under pseudonyms, spreading rumours that she had slept with numerous people, including her uncle.

He also cloned her profile to message a professional photographer in order to gain access to a shared online folder containing nude images of her, which Furness alleged Hardy then sent to her boss.

Hardy later told Abby's then-boyfriend she had cheated on him, which led to them splitting up.

"My boyfriend got a message from a fake Instagram account saying that they knew I’d been cheating on him," Furness told The Guardian. "It gave our relationship trust issues. We ended up breaking up a month later."

Hardy was arrested in 2020, but he denied everything and carried on stalking for over a year.

In October 2021, he pleaded guilty to stalking involving fear of violence and harassment at Chester Crown Court and, in January 2022, he was sentenced to nine years in jail.

However, in October 2022, a court of appeal reduced Hardy's sentence to eight years after three judges agreed the starting sentence was too high.

Where is Abby Furness now?

Following Hardy's arrest, Abby is still a micro-influencer on Instagram. She is also a singer, dancer, model and fire-breather.

In November 2022, Furness told Vice that authorities and even loved ones accused her of inviting the cyber stalking because of her online presence.

A police mugshot of Matthew Hardy. He is looking up and is in a white t-shirt
Matthew Hardy. Cheshire Police

Once her family became the targets of Hardy’s stalking and he’d claimed she had slept with her uncle, her aunt responded in their family WhatsApp group.

"You need to work out who it is," she allegedly wrote. "I'm going to block you on everything. I don't want your drama brought into the family. It’s your fault. Take yourself off of Instagram."

"I got upset because it really wasn’t me," Furness told the publication. "I wasn’t trying to bring this drama to the family. It really hurt my bond with my auntie."

She also told the publication that while she was once "carefree and chirpy and happy", she’s now "paranoid" and suffers from anxiety and depression.

Can I Tell You a Secret? is available to watch on Netflix now. Sign up for Netflix from £6.99 a month. Netflix is also available on Sky Glass and Virgin Media Stream.

Looking for something else to watch? Check out more of our Documentaries coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to see what's on tonight.


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