Staying safe in relationships
This information is mainly for people aged under 19 years old. However, the same advice applies to people of all ages!
When someone takes an explicit (revealing) image of themselves and sends it onto friends or a boy/girlfriend via a mobile phone or another form of technology is referred to as ‘sexting’. This may seem fun and exciting but it comes with risks.
Once the images have been taken and sent to others, all control is lost by the person and the images can end up anywhere. Your partner that you trust now may become an ex and what might they do with the picture once you have split up? The image may be seen by friends, family members, a future employer and even in some cases in possession of an offender.
This puts the person who took the picture in a vulnerable position as someone they may or not know have the images and could use technology to bully, harass or even try to locate them.
THINK – if you wouldn’t print the images and pass them to friends and family members, they are NOT appropriate to share via a mobile phone, email or another technology.
Staying Safe Online
The internet is a great way to stay in contact with friends however it is very important to stay safe.
- When you choose a profile picture which might be put on social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, avoid putting photos up which could give strangers an idea of where you live.
- Check your privacy settings regularly
- Check your location settings, some social media sites and apps such as Facebook and Snapchat, let you share your location with other users
- Think before you post.
- Never share or reveal passwords.
- Be careful who you talk to.
- If someone adds you on a social media site or chat site who you don’t know, ignore them and delete their request.
- Don’t share personal information like your address or phone number with anyone you don’t know.
What is grooming?
A ‘groomer’ is someone who makes an emotional connection with someone and tries to make them do things such as:
- have a sexual conversation online or by text message
- send naked images of yourself, this is sometimes known as sexting
- send sexual videos of yourself
- do something sexual live on a webcam
- meet up with them in person
- They may be old or young and they can also be male or female.
What to do if you think you are being groomed
If you think you’re being groomed don’t worry about getting into trouble, you haven’t done anything wrong. You can report your concerns by:
You can report an adult or stranger if they’ve sent you a sexual message, asked you to send one or sent anything that makes you feel uncomfortable or asked you to meet up with them.
For more information