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Thursday, 31 July 2014

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Cumbria police receive reports of young people sharing indecent images of themselves on social media

Cumbria police are urging young people to not take indecent images of themselves, and others, as reports of images of such images increase.

Since December 1 2013 police in Carlisle have received six reports of indecent images – mostly as a result of young people sharing images of themselves via social media.

Most of the images reported are from the social networking applications Snapchat and Kik. Some of the children in the reported photographs are as young as ten years old.

Sgt Colin Ritchie, from the Public Protection Unit in north Cumbria for Cumbria Constabulary, said: “One of the main problems is that parents are often unaware of what apps and social networking sites their children are using. Technology moves quickly, but it is important for parents to stay up to date and set boundaries.

“It is also crucial that young people understand the dangers of sexting – whether it is someone you know or someone you have ‘met’ online. It may just seem like a bit of fun, but the truth is once an image has been sent it can end up anywhere.

“Indecent images of children and teenagers can be used to bully, harass or even locate the person who sent the image. It’s not worth the risk.

“If anyone receives an indecent image or text do not send it on, and report it to a responsible adult. Technically, possessing an indecent image of another minor is a criminal offence and you could be breaking the law.”

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