YOUNGSTERS in Warwickshire are increasingly putting themselves in danger by sending and posting naked pictures of themselves.
The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) say more under 18s are sharing nude selfies on mobile phones and social media.
The charity says such images fuel the offending of those who view child pornography online and are urging parents to talk to their children about the risks, and the fact children taking and then sharing nude selfies were committing a crime.
The NSPCC is also calling on internet companies to make it easier for such images to be removed from the internet.
Peter Wanless, CEO of the NSPCC, said: “Digital technology has fuelled an explosion in the production and consumption of child sexual abuse images.
“As well as pursuing and deterring adults who make and distribute these we must educate children about how to keep themselves safe online and offline and how to get help as soon as grooming or abuse happens.
“Dedicated police operations have made a real difference, but the internet industry must prioritise this issue by committing their expertise and work with the public and voluntary sector to find solutions.”
Det Ch Insp Carl Moore of Warwickshire Police said the fight against online child abuse in the county would go on through
Operation Safenet which was launched in May.
He added: “We have a dedicated team of officers and digital forensic staff proactively tracking people in Warwickshire.
“The team use the latest digital investigative techniques to identify where illegal images are being viewed, allowing the police and digital forensic experts to seize evidence from the home and arrest those involved.
“This approach means police can immediately take action to prevent further offences and protect children at risk.
“An indecent image of a child is a young person in a real situation, being horrifically abused. Offenders should be in no doubt that they are perpetuating the child’s suffering by making, distributing, and possessing indecent images.”