CHILDLINE ADVICE: Working together to get nude images removed from the net

We all have a role to help keep our children safe online.

Monday, 5th July 2021, 12:00 am
Some young people told our counsellors they felt embarrassed, fearful and self-loathing, while others had concerns about the long-term impact on their future prospects
Some young people told our counsellors they felt embarrassed, fearful and self-loathing, while others had concerns about the long-term impact on their future prospects

That partnership working is crucial and so a recent joint effort that Childline has undertaken with the Internet Watch Foundation is all the more welcome.

Together we have launched a tool that works to help young people get nude images or videos removed from the internet.

It is called the Report Remove tool and can be used by any young person under 18 to report a nude image or video of themselves that has appeared online.

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We piloted Report Remove in February 2020 and it has proven invaluable for young people already.

It can be understandably shocking to hear that a child or young person has shared a nude image or video of themselves but it is important to understand that there are many different circumstances that may have led to this.

Some may have sent an image for fun, or to a boyfriend or girlfriend which has then subsequently been shared without their consent.

Whilst others may have been groomed online or blackmailed into sharing this content.

The IWF has seen reports of self-generated images more than double from January to April this year, compared with the same period last year, increasing from 17,500 to 38,000.

Our trained Childline counsellors know the devastating impact that the sharing of nude images can have on a young person.

Some young people told our counsellors they felt embarrassed, fearful and self-loathing, while others had concerns about the long-term impact on their future prospects - and some revealed they’d turned to self-harm to cope with their situation.

So if a child has had a nude image shared online it’s vital they that they know who to turn to for support and that Childline and the IWF’s Report Remove tool is available for them.

The tool can be found on the Childline website and can be used by any young person under the age of 18. As part of Report Remove, a young person has to verify their age and, rest assured, Childline also ensures that all young people are safeguarded and supported throughout the whole process.