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Cases of cyber-flashing on trains are going 'largely unreported'

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restroom    341

https://news.sky.com/story/cases-of-cyber-flashing-on-trains-are-going-largely-unreported-11937280

 

Suspects are hard to identify because pictures can be sent anonymously, but victims say it makes them fearful on public transport.

 

The number of women being sent sexually explicit pictures by strangers on trains more than doubled last year - but many incidents are going "largely unreported".

There were 66 reports of cyber-flashing in 2019 compared with 34 in 2018, figures from the British Transport Police show.

 

Cyber-flashing is when a person sends an unsolicited sexual image to a stranger using AirDrop, a file-sharing function on iPhones.

 

Despite the rising number of cases, only one arrest was made in 2019 - and it is believed this crime is under-reported because victims believe cyber-flashing is "not serious enough" to contact the police.

 

Campaigners have said that "the actual number of women affected by this will almost certainly be much higher" than the police's official figures.

 

If a victim's AirDrop settings are set to "everyone", it means someone outside of their contacts list can request to send them a file.

This can be done anonymously, as all that is shown on the receiving device is a preview of the picture and the name of the iPhone sending the file. As a result, bringing perpetrators to justice can be difficult.

 

The technology has a short range, meaning victims are often targeted on trains.

 

Figures obtained by the PA news agency suggest that 88% of the victims who contacted police were aged between 21 and 30 years old.

 

Most incidents happened on London Underground services or at National Rail stations.

 

Victims have said the incident caused them to feel fearful on public transport.

 

Rebecca Hitchen, from the End Violence Against Women Coalition, said the increase in cyber-flashing cases shows women are more confident they will be taken seriously if they come forward.

 

But the campaigner added: "It can also suggest that this particular behaviour is becoming more common.

 

"What we do know is that the actual number of women affected by this will almost certainly be much higher than the number of reports, and it will be impacting on their ability to go about their lives feeling safe and free."

 

Laws around image-based sexual abuse are being reviewed by the government as part of proposals to bring cyber-flashing in line with other sexual offences.

Clare McGlynn, professor in law at Durham University and an expert on image-based sexual abuse, said the rising number of reports shows "women have had enough of this harassment".

 

She added: "Now we need action, and I am confident the Law Commission review is taking this seriously, recognising that cyber-flashing can be very frightening and adversely impact on women's daily lives."

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restroom    341

I don't really get this...

 

So how do you know as the sender, who the phone your sending to belongs to? It could be the woman sat opposite you or it could be the big butch bloke sat next to her?

 

Aside to that, if i'm sat there and get an offer from someone i don't know to receive a file to my device, i would most likely say no, unless i'm prepared to receive something that, in all probability, will not be something of interest to me?

 

If i was to receive something like this, what is the point in going to the police? It would be reported and nothing else happen. Police are low on resource and i don't imagine would sit there looking through CCTV footage of who was on the train with me at the time and if they had an iPhone, trace them down, check to see if they had sent anything recently to an unknown device and then press charges?

 

Whilst not pleasant to get something like this, i'm sure most people would simply roll their eyes, delete it and move on with their life?

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+RNDM_STRNGR    10,582

yeah what feeling of harrassment just dont accept anything from anyone who is not on your contact list.

 

problem solved. unless I am missing something.  why would you ever trust to receive anything from strangers phone 

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Matthew S.    1,227

I think the problem is is when you receive an "invite to airdrop" it shows a thumbnail of the photo being sent.  And it's also just that people are stupid and don't switch their airdrop settings from "accept from everyone" to "contacts only", had to help my doctor with that recently and he was telling me about a flight he was on that quiet a few people got cyber-flashed.

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restroom    341
On 2/20/2020 at 4:29 PM, Matthew S. said:

I think the problem is is when you receive an "invite to airdrop" it shows a thumbnail of the photo being sent.  And it's also just that people are stupid and don't switch their airdrop settings from "accept from everyone" to "contacts only", had to help my doctor with that recently and he was telling me about a flight he was on that quiet a few people got cyber-flashed.

Hmm, thats quite bad i guess in that case. But why wouldn't Apple default it to "contacts only" and then make it so you had to open it up?

 

Also - why would you cyber flash people en mass on a flight!? That's just insane!

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Peresvet    364
Posted (edited)

At first I thought the women were being sent images starring themselves :D Like, someone would sneak up on them on the train and then send them the stuff....to demand a ransom or idk.

 

Pff...

 

This is just a bland case of trolling/spamming.

 

Wonder if an accused can pull the "free speech" defense. 

 

"I was expressing myself via AirDrop when I sent those files!"

Edited by Peresvet

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