Teens post lewd photos on Toowoomba dating page

A TOOWOOMBA Facebook page containing near-naked selfies of under-age teenagers is operating despite warnings from police against the practice.

The Facebook page designed for singles which the Chronicle has chosen not to name features teenagers posting images of themselves asking to be rated.

Images from people claiming to be as young as 13 show them shirtless or in their underwear along with phone numbers listed for strangers to get in touch.

The site has about 1500 members and has images from March this year.

One of the images on a Toowoomba young single's Facebook page.
One of the images on a Toowoomba young single's Facebook page. Contributed

Toowoomba Crime Prevention Officer Sergeant Tony Rehn said the site was of concern and in dangerous territory.

Messages from members attached to their images say they are "looking for a loyal relationship", "looking for someone to love" or "needing someone". Other messages suggest date locations.

Sgt Rehn said people concerned about the content could first make a complaint directly to Facebook but stressed education around appropriate social media interactions was vital to avoid committing an offence.

Despite the Facebook page rules saying anyone over 20 or 21 would be removed, Sgt Rehn said there was no way to know who was behind the profiles or their age.

"Once you put it up there you have no control over it and it can affect your life well into the future," he said.

Should parents monitor their teenagers’ internet activity?

This poll ended on 11 November 2016.

Current Results

YES

85%

NO

14%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Other rules on the page say members should not come to the page "if you're just looking for sex, nudes and rude posts will lead to ban" and "no stalking or being a creep".

He said social media pages like this would continue to be set up.

"You shut one down and another will pop up, making education vital to keep people who are using them safe." Sgt Rehn said.

"We reinforce the message that if you put an image online, in any context, without the proper security anyone can see it."

An educational resource at thinkuknow.org.au/ is available for online tips.



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