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Online Safety

Surge in sexually explicit texts sent by children during lockdown

9 July 2020

New research suggests girls as young as six have been sending sexually explicit texts during the coronavirus pandemic.

The horrifying new research also suggests ‘Sexts’ typed out by children has risen in the UK by 183% during the lockdown and there’s also been a 55% rise in sexting during normal school hours.

Parents have been offered a million free downloads of this phone safety app via the Government’s website as a means of responding.

SafeToNet pioneered the app which stops harmful messages being sent and offers guidance as a message is being composed.

The British tech start-up looked at 70million such messages sent by children and found girls are sending the majority.

One father, Mr Pursey, said children are killing themselves because of online activity and he had been left scarred by viewing some of the material.

New research suggests girls as young as six are sending sexually explicit texts during the coronavirus lockdown
SafeToNet research
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Children need stronger protections online

CARE’s response

This story further highlights why we cannot afford to leave the internet like the Wild West that it is with little to no regulation. We have a duty towards young people in our society to offer them the same level of protection online as we afford them offline. The Government has made steps in the right direction, but the failure to implement age checks on online porn is a glaring omission and should be corrected as soon as possible.


Online Safety

For children and young people, access to harmful online content is only a click away. CARE is working towards a society where they are as well-protected online as they are offline.

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