The Internet Watch Foundation and Childline have joinded forces to help stop the spread of sexting among teens.
The two organisations said they were teaming up to help teens know where to get help in removing online sexually explicit images.
According to a Childline survey of 13-18 year olds, teens are frequently taking huge risks by making and sending sexual images of themselves.
Read Recombu Digital’s guide to Parental Internet ControlsNearly two-thirds of young people questioned (60 per cent) questioned said they had been asked for a sexual image or video of themselves, demonstrating a concerning prevalence and an immense pressure on young people to participate, according to Childline.
Four in ten children said they had created an image or video of themselves, with around a quarter of all those questioned saying they had sent the image or video to someone else.
Over half of the young people surveyed by ChildLine said they had received a sexual photo or video, most received them from a partner but worryingly a third received them from a stranger.
While most said the image went to a boyfriend or girlfriend, a third said they sent it to someone they met online but didn’t know in real life and 15 per cent said they had sent it to a total stranger.
Known as ‘sexting’, the sharing of self-generated sexually explicit images or videos by mobile phone or online is now commonplace amongst young people to the point that it is considered ‘mundane’.
Peter Liver, director of ChildLine Services said it was essential that it is able to support young people to talk to ChildLine before an issue escalates but also that it can help them to deal with removing images from online.
“The sharing of these images does not necessarily happen in isolation, it can be related to other online issues such as cyber bullying and draw from influences such as celebrity and easy access of online pornography. Our partnership with the IWF means that we can help young people to verify their age before logging a complaint to get the image removed swiftly and efficiently,” he said.
Earlier this year the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) has shut down the 100,000th child abuse site since it began its campaign back in 1996. The IWF also noted an increase in the numbers of legitimate business sites being hacked and used to distribute child abuse images.