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Police warning to New Forest parents after explicit photos sent on social media



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POLICE have issued a warning to parents after New Forest children as young as eight were found to have shared explicit photographs on social media.

Hampshire Constabulary said it was aware of incidents of sexting, which refers to self-taken nude, semi-nude or sexual photos, videos and messages, shared on Snapchat and TikTok.

Urging parents to learn about the risks as well as discussing the topic with their children, a spokesperson said: "There are so many risks to children that come with this type of activity.

children as young as eight were found to have shared explicit photographs
children as young as eight were found to have shared explicit photographs

"It could lead to bullying, sextortion – a form of cybercrime and blackmail during which victims are lured into performing sexual acts in front of a webcam, a camera on a smartphone – and exploitation, as well as having a significant impact on your child’s mental health."

Parents are advised to remind their children that not everyone online is a friend and not always who they say they are.

The police spokesperson added: "It is always worth considering reviewing what apps they are using and the parental controls and privacy settings on devices, mobile apps and social media networks that they may use too."

As reported in the A&T, former Hounsdown School pupil Megan Hinton was left humiliated after a nude photo of her was spread on social media after being tricked in to sending it by a female pupil posing as a boy.

She has spent the last five years working with police, teachers and the government on the issue.

Anyone who has concerns that a child may be being exploited online should call police on 101.



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