Internet-related rapes involving minors rose 300pc in five years

80 per cent of rape cases reported in the past two years involved online acquaintances. — AFP pic
80 per cent of rape cases reported in the past two years involved online acquaintances. — AFP pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 27 — Rape cases involving children and the use of the Internet increased fourfold between 2010 and 2015, a survey has revealed.

Statistics by the Sexual, Women and Child Investigations Unit from the police and Digi CyberSAFE also found that one in 10 children was asked to share intimate pictures or videos online.

“Based on our survey, about 80 per cent of our young respondents said they were okay with befriending strangers they met online,” CyberSAFE programme manager Philip Ling was quoted as saying in the New Straits Times.

“About 80 per cent of them were also not concerned about sharing their personal details publicly online,” he added.

The survey also revealed that almost 80 per cent of rape cases reported in the past two years involved online acquaintances.

Ling said that the survey polled 14,000 children from 3,000 schools in the country, and pointed that the latest revelation from the survey indicated a worrying trend.

“At Digi, we are continuously working with our programme partners, who share the same beliefs and values, to protect our children from cyber threats,” he was quoted as saying.

In the same report, Unicef Child Protection specialist Selvi Supramaniam said sex education was essential to prevent children from becoming sexual preys.

“Children must be able to learn about body parts with correct information. If such information is not given by the right person, particularly parents, they will be curious and learn from their friends,” she was quoted as saying.

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