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Prevalence and pathways

Image-based abuse — prevalence and pathways

How common is image-based abuse?

  • Image-based abuse affects a wide range of Australians
  • 11% of Australians 18+ have had a nude or sexual photo/video posted online or sent on without their consent

How do different groups compare?

  • 25% Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent
  • 24% young women 18 to 24
  • 19% those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans or intersex (LGBTI)
  • 18% those who speak a language other than English at home
  • 15% girls aged 15 to 17

Women are twice as likely to experience image-based abuse than men

15% of women 18+, 7% of men 18+

How recent was the experience of image-based abuse?

  • in the last month, 12%
  • in the last year, 19%
  • more than a year ago, 54%
  • unsure, 13%

What types of images are being circulated?

  • 35% unsure
  • 21% semi-nude or partially clothed
  • 14% down-blousing*

*Option asked of women only

Half of those affected by image-based abuse thought they were recognisable in the photo/video.

A third said their name was shared with the photo/video and one-fifth said their social network details were shared.

How are images being shared/distributed?

  • Facebook: 53%
  • SMS/MMS: 30%
  • Snapchat: 11%
  • Email: 11%
  • Instagram: 4%
  • Twitter: 3%
  • Porn/revenge porn websites: 5%
  • Other/unsure: 14%

But there are some differences by gender and age.

Images shared via:

  • SMS/MMS: 36% women
  • Facebook: 42% women
  • Snapchat: 27% people 18 to 24 years, 47% women 15 to 17 years

24% of victims took these actions

  • 47% confronted the perpetrator
  • 35% reported it
  • 20% withdrew from social activities
  • 17% talked to others
  • 17% sought legal or other advice
  • 9% moved house, changed job or school/uni

76% of victims did not take action because:

  • 29% felt it wouldn’t change anything
  • 26% no reason
  • 22% didn’t know what to do
  • 18% felt embarrassment
  • 11% felt shame
  • 11% not affected by it

87% who took action said it resolved the problem for them.

Source: Research commissioned by the eSafety, May 2017. Respondents comprised 3,216 online women aged 15+ and 903 online men aged 18+ in Australia.