A man, David WiIlard, announces that his new app will mine and exploit data but that they are doing it for a good purpose. He then flirts with his girlfriend, Jennifer, and kisses her. Jennifer tells someone she is breaking up with him tonight.
The SVU team is looking into a serial rapist and murderer who ties up drunk women, rapes them, kills them, and shaves off hair from the back of their heads. When they are called to Jennifer's apartment, where she has been found dead, she appears to be another victim of the serial killer.
Jennifer's sister Laura says that Jennifer never drank, though she is an alcoholic herself. She thinks Willard was spying on Jennifer. Willard tells the cops that Laura was paranoid. Willard has created an app for data mining but he claims it's in order to create greater transparency in the world, not to exploit or spy on consumers.
The serial killer is arrested. A woman he tried to kidnap recognized him from a sketch the cops released and took a photo to send to the tip line. Benson believes that the serial killer did not kill Jennifer, though the homicide detective wants to just close the case. Benson chooses to ignore him and keep the case open.
The medical examiner, Bennett, reveals he was blackmailed. He had to change the evidence to make it look like the serial killer killed Jennifer or a mistake he made early in his career would be revealed. The detectives realize Willard and his app are behind this. The ME is suicidal but Fin gets him to give him his gun.
Benson asks Barba for a warrant. But Barba gets a call from someone and when Benson arrives at Willard's business she finds out Barba has recused himself and is no longer on the case.
Barba won't tell Benson what's wrong. The detectives are sure Barba has been blackmailed. They get a handwritten warrant and Willard mumbles that he thought Barba was smarter than that.
Carisi finds a porn tape on Willard's computer. He recorded it without Jen's consent and she got mad.
The SVU detectives investigate and find a ten-year-old girl who was interviewed by Willard, who was pretending to be a cop. She is scared to tell them what was going on.
Barba tells Benson that he gave money to a strung-out witness, knowing she'd buy heroin. After the witness testified, she OD'd. He wanted to tell his boss and the woman's daughter before he told Benson.
The cops talk to Laura again. Laura is mad they didn't believe her. She says Jen says she had herself covered in case Willard went nuts after they broke up.
At Jen's apartment, the cops discover that she secretly recorded Willard on her TV. The video shows Jen breaking up with Willard and he hit her. He accidentally killed her.
Willard pleads not guilty at arraignment and bail is set at $1 million.
Barba tells Benson he is off the case and must go see his boss to find out about the future of his career. He's not sorry for what he did.