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Part of our Online Relationship Series

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What is sexting?

Sexting involves sending, receiving, or forwarding explicit messages, images, or videos of a sexual nature. Although mobile phones are the most common vehicle for sexting, the term can also apply to sending sexually explicit messages through email, instant messaging, and/or social media sites.

They can be sent to or from a friend, boyfriend, girlfriend, or someone met online but it is illegal for anyone under 18. Some of the main platforms it occurs on are Snapchat, Tinder, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Kik.

For more information on the associated risks and online safety tips for parents and carers, watch our explainer video, available to those with a National Online Safety membership.