Alarming new research reveals extent of child exploitation attempts on dating apps

Attorney-General

Cabinet Secretary

The Hon Mark Dreyfus KC MP

Minister for Communications

The Hon Michelle Rowland MP

Joint media release

Alarming new research from the Australian Institute of Criminology has revealed dating apps are being used to facilitate child sexual exploitation.

The Institute’s trends and issues paper, The Sexual exploitation of Australian children on dating apps and websites, reveals one in eight (12.4%) of surveyed Australians who have used dating apps in the past five years had been asked by other users on the platform to facilitate the sexual exploitation of children.

This included platform users being asked for sexual information about their child or a child they knew, as well as for sexual videos and pictures, to meet the child in person or asking for access via a webcam.

The results of this ground-breaking survey by the AIC are shocking, and unacceptable.

The Government expects dating platforms to keep all users safe through accessible and responsive reporting mechanisms, support for victims of abuse, processes and policies that hold perpetrators accountable, and incorporating safety by design processes.

Anyone who has been approached for child exploitation content should immediately report it to the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation, through their website at www.accce.gov.au/report. If a child is in immediate danger call 000.

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