This information was originally designed for use with teenagers. It is also available for download in booklet form, via the link at the bottom of the page. Young people using this resource are advised to discuss issues with a parent, carer, youth worker or responsible adult they trust. Similarly, parents are advised to discuss issues openly with their children and teenagers as appropriate.



How much do you know about sexting?


Simply decide whether each of the statements are true or false:  (Answers below)





Sending a ‘sext’ to someone else if you are under 18 is illegal.



In America, an 18 year old boy was put on the sex offenders register because his 16 year old ex-girlfriend sent him a ‘sext’ which he sent on.



‘Sexting’ can be used as a form of cyber bullying.



Anti-child pornography laws in the UK include guidance on the consequences of ‘sexting’.



A 2009 UK survey of 2,094 11- 18 year olds found 38% had received a sexual image by text or email.





What is sexting?


"Sexting" is the slang term for the use of a mobile phone or similar electronic device, to distribute pictures or videos of sexually explit images. It can also refer to text messages of a sexually-charged nature.


Once these images have been taken and sent to others, control is lost of them and they can end up anywhere.  They could be seen by friends and family, a future employer, or even, in some cases, end up in the possession an offender!


This also puts that person who originally sent the images in a vulnerable position, as somebody they may or may not know now has these images and could use technology to bully, harass or even try to locate them.


Just think – if you wouldn’t print and pass these images around your school or show your mum or dad, they are not appropriate to share via mobile phone or other technologies.


Futher information:


In 2011 CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre) produced a film called ‘Exposed’ about the consequences of sexting. Check it out on youtube by clicking here.


If you receive a sexually explicit message online, or are being harassed into producing one, you can use this button (shown below) to report it to the police!  It should appear on most sites including facebook and msn messenger.


Click here for  a link straight through to the CEOP website.
Other useful websites:  - and search ‘sexting’


Answers to quiz:

1. true - any person under 18 is a child, any explicit images of a person under the age of 18 is child pornography.
2. true - his girlfriend was lucky not to be charged with making child pornography even though it was a picture of herself.
3. true - once an image is sent it is out of your control and can be used in any situation against your will.
4. false - which is why the waters are sometimes muddy!
5. true - and that was three years ago!

Scary isn't it?

Anne Miall,
26 Apr 2012, 08:57