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There has been a growing trend in recent years around young people sending, receiving and forwarding sexually explicit text messages and/or photos via mobile phones. This is known as ‘sexting’ or sending a ‘sexy text’.iStock_000001884698Medium(1)

What many young people and their parents often don’t know is that sexting can have serious consequences and lead to bullying, public humiliation and even sexual assault. In most cases involving people under the age of 18 years it is illegal.

You could be charged with a criminal offence if:

  • You take a nude, semi-nude, or sexually explicit photo of a person under the age of 18, even if they agree to the photo being taken or you take the photo of yourself.

  • You take a photo or a video of a person under the age of 18 involved in sexual activity or posing in an indecent sexual manner, even if it is of yourself.

  • You are found to have this kind of photo or video on your phone or other device eg: PC, iPod

  • You forward this kind of photo or video onto others.

Safety tips for young people 
Safety tips for parents

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© Family Planning Association of Western Australia (Inc) March 2012
Prepared in consultation with Susan McLean – Cybersafety expert cybersafetysolutions.com.au


SHQ offers a range of professional services including testing and treatment of STIs, contraception information and supply, unplanned pregnancy, cervical screening, STI drop-in clinics and counselling.