The percentage of women and young children victimised by cybersex trafficking increases year after year—and the traffickers are attacking younger victims.
According to the International Justice Mission Australia, 47% of cybersex trafficking victims they rescued were 12 years old or younger, with a 2-month-old as the youngest victim.
"Cybersex trafficking is slavery in the digital age. Victims have endured unspeakable abuse and exploitation. What they need is help to recover and live peaceful, secure, and prosperous lives,". Archer Matthews
Given these aggravating circumstances, here are some salient points you need to know about cybersex trafficking. Continue reading and learn more about how to support ending these vile crimes against women and children.
In simple terms, cybersex trafficking is the exploitation of an individual via the internet. Such abuse is typically done using a web camera, images, videos, or other media. Hence, it is very much like sex trafficking in that traffickers coerce the victim into providing sexual services. But, in contrast to conventional sex trafficking, cybersex trafficking victims may never meet their abusers. Instead, their traffickers may assault, live-stream, video, or photograph victims from a location that might be anywhere in the world with an internet connection then sell the media or footage to malicious users or purchasers for a profit.
The internet has significantly facilitated pedophiles and traffickers grooming, luring, manipulating, and exploiting vulnerable women and children without being apprehended. The widespread availability of internet connections also has simplified things for abusers to produce and distribute cybersex trafficking content.
Now, in the aftermath of the worldwide COVID-19 crisis and the face of massive lockdowns, cybersex trafficking is growing.
Considering the nature of cybersex trafficking, often, there is no clear endpoint to the exploitation. The underlying reason is the growth of the internet and rapid digital innovations. With these, offenders can view recorded digital material repeatedly for months or even years. For cybersex trafficking victims, it may mean and feel like they're abused over and over again.
It’s an overwhelming and upsetting issue but we must not look away.
Be Hers is committed to making a stand for these children. Through our foundation, we give 100% proceeds to our partner organisations working together to to fight against cybersex trafficking, slavery and exploitation.
Please support us to help us continue to awareness and provide prevention, rescue and rehabilitation by making a tax deductible donation today.
WRITTEN BY ANGELINA JACKMAN
image via IJM