Online child exploitation is when people use the internet to groom and exploit children and young people via social media and gaming sites. Sexual exploitation can start and stay online and perpetrators will trawl online sites actively looking for people to target and in turn, exploit.
They might hide their true age, gender and identity. They may try and meet up with the young person face-to-face or may encourage them to send sexual images/videos of themselves. They might offer gifts, game codes or flattering messages in return.
If you are worried about online sexual abuse or the way someone has been communicating with you online, contact police on 101 or visit www.ceop.police.uk to report.
You can find out more about the social networks, apps and games your child uses by visiting NSPCC NetAware: www.net-aware.org.uk. It is a great resource that can teach you about what the games, apps and social media platforms do, the risks involved and how you can change privacy settings, report and block users.
The new Something’s Not Right website is packed full of information and resources around Child Exploitation, including the different types of exploitation, what signs to look for in a child or young person, and what support is available if you or someone you know may be a victim of child exploitation. The website also features some powerful real life stories about victims of CE.