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Manitoba RCMP warns parents of growing trend in self-exploitation on social media

Manitoba RCMP are warning parents of a growing trend in self-exploitation on social media.

Self-exploitation is generally defined as youth creating, sending or sharing sexual images and/or video of themselves with peers online through social media apps like YouTube, TikTok, Instagram or through electronic devices, police say.

Police say the internet child exploitation unit has seen a surge in reports from social media platforms concerning children sharing videos online, frequently associated with their parents social media accounts or devices.

In 2023, the unit received 652 such reports, up from 242 in 2022.

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“We encourage parents and guardians to talk to their children about online safety and to be vigilant of unsolicited friend requests,” said Cpl. Gord Olson.

“Safe online habits can go a long way to protecting kids from exploitation, but parent awareness is also key.”

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