BBC Spotlight NI revealed today that 731 photographs of schoolgirls in Northern Ireland have been published on a child pornography website frequented by paedophiles.
The report mentioned that the photographs were in fact, innocent in nature. They are mere photos of schoolgirls with their friends and colleagues and some contained “bare skin” but nothing sexual in nature. The context in which the photos were published, however, is purely sexual and deviant as evident from the users’ comments on the photos.
The schoolgirls included pupils from 19 post-primary schools in Northern Ireland and it was mentioned that on discovering the website BBC Spotlight NI passed on the information to the PSNI’s Child Protection Unit as well as all the schools related to the incident.
The Child Protection Unit revealed that the website is registered in Cyprus with servers located in the Netherlands but it was in fact based in and run from Israel. After being contacted by the BBC Spotlight NI Programme, the website managers removed photos in question but had refused to pass on information on who was responsible for uploading the photos.
Later on, a representative of the website went on to answer some of the programme’s questions and said that the images can count as “risqué” and for the “fantasy” of its users.
With the incident currently in question by The Police Service of Northern Ireland, this sad, sick and twisted story goes out to show that even with the most innocent of intentions, child photos can be used for deviant sexual interest of paedophiles at the drop of a hat. NoBullying urges parents and caregivers around the world to talk to children and teens about what pictures to share online and whom to share the pictures with. Photos safety is more important now than it ever was.