You haven’t done anything wrong and what’s happened is not your fault. You are not alone and we are here to help you. We know it’s easier said than done but try to keep calm and follow this advice:
1. Collect evidence
Take screenshots of any content that is online. Try and include the URL (website address), times and dates of when it was posted and any details of who it was posted by. Keep copies of any public or private messages, especially those of a threatening nature, together with the dates and times they were sent.
We understand that the first reaction you may have is to want to delete all the content immediately. This is your choice, but we do advise that if you want to seek legal action it may be best to contact the police first before reporting the content and risk having evidence removed prematurely.
Even if you know who is responsible, we advise that you stop communicating with that individual. Do not try and negotiate or bargain with them. If you feel it would offer you reassurance, block the perpetrator from your email, phone and social media.
If they have asked for money/ goods/ intimate images etc in return for removing or not sharing content, we advise you DO NOT send anything. Often they will just keep asking for more.
If this has been going on for some time, or there is other harassing behaviour happening against you, it can be a good idea to create a timeline of events.
2. Report to the police
It’s against the law in the UK to share an intimate image or video without consent and with the intention of causing distress. Going to the police may well feel like an intimidating prospect, but they are the right people to take action for you. You can go to your local police station, or call the police on the non-emergency number 101.
Remember, you are a victim of crime. Be prepared that they may not know the best way to deal with your problem, but you should always expect a non-biased, non-judgemental response.
Make sure you keep a record of your log/case number so the police can quickly access your details if you want to add additional information or get an update on the investigation. It will also save you having to repeat what has happened over and over which may be distressing for you.
If at any point you feel like you are at immediate risk of physical danger, contact the police immediately on 999.
3. Report content
On most social media platforms, it’s against their community guidelines to share intimate images and videos without their consent. We would encourage you to report this with the platform. If the images or videos have been shared elsewhere to a general porn website you might be able to find a contact email address or form to report the post.
4. Talk to the helpline
As well as advice, we can help with the reporting of intimate content shared without consent. Please provide a direct URL to where this has been shared and we can help to report this on your behalf. We can never guarantee any removals but we hold a very high takedown rate.
5. Reach out for more support
We understand how distressing this can be and will always encourage you to reach out for some more support to help you cope with what has happened. You can find more support services and organisations that might be able to give more help here.