Study: More than 300 million children around the world face online sexual abuse every year

Study: More than 300 million children around the world face online sexual abuse every year

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The crimes range from so-called sextortion, in which predators demand money from victims to keep images private, to the misuse of AI technology to create deepfake videos and images.

The problem is global, but research shows the United States is a particularly high-risk area, with one in nine men admitting to having at some point committed an online crime against children.

“Child abuse material is so prevalent that on average, files are sent to surveillance and policing organisations once every second,” said Paul Stanfield, ChildLight's chief executive.

“This is a global health pandemic that has been hidden for too long. It is spreading in every country, it is growing rapidly, and it requires a global response,” he said.

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