Investigating Nonconsensual Intimate Image Sharing


This piece defines image-based sexual abuse as well as describing the impact it can have on its victims. Legal remedies, the need for better training, and reactive as well as proactive law enforcement and digital forensics response are all covered.


Nonconsensual intimate image sharing – also known as image-based sexual abuse, nonconsensual pornography, or its original slang, “revenge porn” – has been around since at least the 1980s, but didn’t become a widespread social problem until the internet – and mobile phones – became ubiquitous.

So called because its perpetrators often share intimate images in reaction to a breakup or a fight, “revenge porn” is actually the result of a complex mix of motives. It’s often just as devastating to its victims as physical sexual abuse, and is unevenly policed and enforced. How can investigators and forensic examiners respond?


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