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Daily Safeguarding Update
2021 was worst year on record for online child sexual abuse
New research suggests internet grooming of children has surged during lockdown, making 2021 the worst year for online child sexual abuse on record.
The Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) reported that 252,000 URLs were reported and identified as containing images or videos of children being abused, and 182,000 images were flagged as self-generated material.
There was a threefold increase in self-generated online sexual abuse material featuring seven-to 10-year-olds.
The IWF states that the COVID-19 lockdowns could have caused the rise in cases.