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The term ‘Sexting’ refers to someone sending sexually explicit pictures of themselves or others via a mobile phone, email or the web.

It’s very serious because:

  • Having a sexually explicit photograph of someone under the age of 17 in your possession is against the law.
  • If you distribute sexually explicit images of someone who is underage, (even if it is you) you could be charged for possession and distribution of child pornography.

To protect yourself:

  • Don’t take or allow someone else to take a sexually explicit photograph of you. Think about how you would feel if your parents, classmates or neighbours saw it.
  • Once you allow a photograph of yourself to be taken, you have no control over it and it could easily end up in the wrong hands and be passed on and on.

If you get a “sext” message:

  • Report any sexually explicit and/or distressing pictures you receive on your phone to your parents or an adult you trust. Do not delete the message. You and your parents can report it to provides an anonymous facility for the public to report suspected illegal content encountered on the Internet, in a secure and confidential way. It is run by the Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland.