Police warn students of dangers around social media and sexting

POLICE have started delivering social media and sexting awareness presentations to Gold Coast students as part of Operation Expose.

Officers from the Gold Coast District Child Protection Investigation Unit will deliver the presentations to schools across the Gold Coast.

The squad will introduce Coombabah State High School to the operation tomorrow morning.


Detective Inspector Mark White said that sexting is a concerning trend that involves children and young people taking sexually explicit images or videos of themselves and sending them to their friends.

“This practice has escalated in recent times due to the increased uptake of smart devices and phones,” Detective Inspector White said.

“It is important that the Queensland Police Service is active in educating young people about the dangers of this practice.

“That is what Operation Expose aims to do.”

Children use social media sites and instant messaging applications – which are increasingly popular due to the ease with which information, ideas, personal messages, and other content can be shared – to communicate with friends and family.

Social media sites are online communities, with most sites containing a profile page where children post personal information including their name, age, location, photographs, contact details, email addresses and in some instances, their sexual preference.

Be aware that child sex offenders will use social media to:

• Obtain a child’s contact details (from profiles or online chats)
• Build rapport with children
• Lower a child’s inhibitions by slowly introducing sexual content into their conversations
• Seek a face-to face meeting with a child

Ensure your child:

• Chooses a non-identifiable, non-gender specific username
• Never give out any personal information
• Never accepts a friend request or file from a person they don’t know
• Does not share passwords