What to do if an image of you is being shared without your permission
You may have sent a nude or intimate photo, video or text of yourself to someone, and they might share it with others without your consent. This is not your fault and understandably it can be very upsetting for you. 

It’s important to remember that once you send or post an image it’s hard to control what happens to it, even when it’s an image that disappears (like on Snapchat) it can still be screenshot and shared without your permission or knowledge. 

Think about the risks before you send any nude or intimate photos of yourself to someone. Keep in mind: 

  • Your relationship with them may change over time and they may use the image to hurt or embarrass you.  

  • Sometimes people blackmail others into sending more nudes, by threatening to release the original nude if they don’t send more. This is often called “sextortion” by the police and the media. 

Even if you originally shared or made the images/video with someone consensually, it doesn’t mean you have consented to the content being shared to a wider group or publicly. If someone is sharing your nude images without your consent it may be an offence under New Zealand law. 

Once sexual images are shared it is known as image based abuse which covers things like revenge porn. It can also be an offence under the Harmful Digital Communications Act and potentially other Acts. 

If you’ve sent an image to someone and now regret it, it’s best to contact the person and ask them to delete it. 

What you can do if your intimate images are being shared 

If nude or nearly nude images or video of you has been shared without your consent, you can: 

  • Screenshot the content if possible and make a record of where the content is (capture any URLs if you can). 

  • Report the content to the social media platform or website that it was shared on and request the content is removed. 

  • Report the profile or account of the person who shared your content to the platform it was shared on. 

  • Contact Netsafe to find out what else you can do. They may be able to help you get the content removed, talk through other options and let you know what you can do if someone is threatening to share nude images/videos of you or blackmailing you. 

  • If you are feeling confident to undertake the process of reporting and removing your image online you can contact Take It Down directly. Netsafe can also help you with this process. 

  • If you’re feeling stressed or worried, it’s best to talk to someone you trust or contact a support service like 1737Youthline or Lifeline. 

 

It can also be upsetting to receive a nude image you haven't asked for. If possible, and safe to do so, try talking to the person who sent it and ask them to stop sending you inappropriate pictures. You can also report the content or block the person from contacting you again. 

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