Sexting is when someone sends or receives a sexually explicit text, image or video on their mobile phone, usually in a text message. Find out how you can stay in control and what to do if a photo has fallen into the wrong hands.
Think before you send…
If you share an image of yourself online by photo, text or video, via your phone, tablet or computer always think first, “would I be ok with anyone and everyone seeing this?”
Any image of yourself that you send, can and might be shared by the person you sent it to. Once you press send, it is no longer in your control.
If you share a ‘nude’ or ‘underwear shot’ even with someone you trust, you are not able to control who they forward it to or where they save it. It can be sent on to anyone or posted anywhere on the internet. It could end up on social networking sites or even porn sites. You should never feel pressured to send an image of yourself to anyone. Think about why someone would want you to do this. Once they have your image, they have it forever and could even use it against you.
Did you know?
Being involved in sending explicit pictures, where the person in the picture is under the age of 18, can be a criminal offence. This could lead to you getting into trouble with the police, affect your chances of getting a job and even limit the countries that you can travel to. If someone is forcing you to send an inappropriate image of yourself you should report them to the Police by calling 101. Download ChildLine’s free Zipit app for loads of great comebacks if someone’s trying to get you to send them a sexual image.
Before you share a photo of yourself always think:
“Would I be ok with anyone and everyone seeing this?”
Don’t send anything you wouldn’t want your parents, teachers, friends or future employers to see.
If you have sent a sexual image of yourself
Firstly, speak to someone that you can trust like a parent or carer, teacher or family member. You may feel uncomfortable about telling your parents but they will need to know so that they can help and support you. You can call also call Childline free on 0800 1111 and this number won’t appear on a telephone bill. Available 24 hours a day.
To make a report CLICK HERE
You can take control of the situation yourself by doing the following;
If you have posted the image on to a social networking site like Facebook, then you should remove it immediately.
If you have sent an image to someone else you need to ask them to delete it.
If the image has been posted by someone else on a social networking site, like Facebook, then you should report it. Each social networking site will have its own reporting tool. If you’re unsure, ask an adult to help you. Use the reporting tool to tell the site what has happened, as it breaks their own terms and conditions and they will remove it.
You will need to find out if the image is available elsewhere online. You can do this by searching for your name and username and placing your name in inverted commas. It is a good idea to repeat the search regularly over a few weeks.
It may be impossible to delete everything online but you will feel more in control if you know what you will say to people about it:
• “I’ve made a mistake”
• “I’ve learnt from my mistake”
Always turn to a trusted adult for support and your close friends will be there to help you through this.
Parent’s Guide for Safe YouTube and Internet Streaming for Kids
This website provides some great guidance for parents/carers – CLICK HERE
Some more useful links below.