Online grooming

Online grooming is when an adult makes online or phone contact with someone under the age of 16 with the intention of establishing a sexual relationship. This is a criminal offence and occurs in the communication, so you never have to meet this person face to face for them to be investigated and charged.

The people who 'groom' young people, we use the term online sex offenders, may pretend to be someone your age, but often are upfront with the fact that they are an adult and quite older than you. They can manipulate you and make you feel as though your relationship with them is special.
 
The first thing to realise about this kind of relationship is that it is wrong. Adults who pressure young people into doing anything that they don’t feel comfortable with should be reported to the police and blocked. They can be very clever and make you feel as though you have to do something because you owe them, or because otherwise they will get you in trouble.
 
This is wrong and you should report them. You won’t get into trouble for reporting someone like this, no matter what you’ve done.
 

So what can you do about it?

If you think you're being groomed or an adult has approached you online for sex, you should report it to the Australian Federal Police here.
 
Only accept friend requests from people you know and trust.
 
If you're speaking to people you don't know, avoid using your real name or sharing any personal information such as your age or contact details.
 
Never use a webcam with someone you don't know.
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