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Porn sites benefit from sexually suggestive photos and videos of young people posted on networking sites

Sexually suggestive photos and videos of young people are flooding the internet as many porn websites are posting them, according to a report by an internet safety organization.

Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) shows on their study that 88% of daring photos posted on the young people’s  social networking sites are being stolen and uploaded to porn websites.

During the four week period of study, IWF confirmed that “parasite websites” stole sexually explicit images and videos from the original sites. Out of 12,224 images and videos that were monitored, more than half of them were mined by the so-called parasite websites for the sake of posting these intimate photos and videos of young people.

Young people uploaded the original photos and videos to usual networking sites but then snatched by porn websites so they can show them. There were 10,776 photos displayed on porn websites out of the original 12,224 that were monitored.

Organizations urged young people and children to be mindful of their  pictures and videos once they send to their friends. Particular attention was raised about the concern on the dangers of “sexting” or sending of sexually explicit emails or text, as well as pictures with sexual nature.

According to Susie Hargreaves, CEO of the Internet Watch Foundation , young people should be aware of the fact that once their pictures and videos are posted on the internet they don’t automatically relinquish control on them.

“This research gives an unsettling indication of the number of images and videos on the internet featuring young people performing sexually explicit acts or posing,” Ms Hargreaves said. She also mentioned about  how to minimize this kind of problem that parasite websites is doing. The study shows that once a parasite website has taken control of the images and videos, deactivating an online account from a networking site is not enough.

“We need young people to realized that once an image or a video has gone online, they may never be able to remove it entirely.”

The organization mentioned sample cases of children whose lives were ruined because their images and videos are circulating in the internet.  One young woman recalled about a  sexually explicit picture that she posted on her private social networking account  she was 15 year old at that time. She said she was shocked when she knew that her picture was posted on the web without her consent.

Another woman said that she found explicit photos of herself on the web after her phone got stolen. A girl also revealed contemplating on committing suicide after knowing that her pictures are now freely available on the internet.  “I came to regret posting photographs of myself naively on the internet and tried to forget about it, but strangers recognized me from the photographs and made lewd remarks at school,” the woman said’. According to her, she experienced depression because of the incident and attempted a suicide.

Young people have asked the help of the IWF to remove their daring pictures on the internet. A victim wrote asking for help:  “Please remove this from the internet as soon as possible as one family member has already come across it… I feel like ending my life as I am so ashamed and embaressed [sic] and this has been put up without my concent [sic].”

The director of UK Safer Internet Centre David Wright said that adults normally advise children not to “sext”.

“However, this research, coupled with our experience, demonstrates that it is still not uncommon. We hope that our new resource will help and support those who have shared self-generated content to take positive action, he said.”

source: guardian