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New laws to stop perverts ‘cyber flashing’ women being considered by ministers

NEW LAWS to stop perverts “cyber flashing” women are being considered by ministers.

Sickos who send X rated pictures to strangers over AirDrop or Bluetooth cannot be arrested because of a legal loophole.

This is because these message systems are private – giving perverts a free rein to send whatever they want scot-free.

Cops have reported a shocking rise in the number of women bombarded by unwanted filthy messages over recent years.

The Law Commission wants the loophole closed to protect women from being sexually harassed via their iPhones.

They say The Malicious Communications Act 1988 should be beefed up so messages sent over ‘private networks’ like Bluetooth are included.

Pile-on messages harassing people should also be made illegal, the Commission says.

Professor Penney Lewis, Criminal Law Commissioner said: “As the internet and social media have become an everyday part of our lives, the amount of abuse has also risen.

“Unfortunately, the law has not kept up and isn’t giving victims the protection they need.

“Our proposals will tackle this harmful behaviour whilst also ensuring that we protect people’s freedom of speech.”

Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden backed the calls.

He said: “Online communication has been a lifeline for many in recent months but it should not be a refuge for abusive, harmful or criminal behaviour.

“I thank the Law Commission for its review and look forward to seeing the final recommendations on its proposed reforms to criminal law next year.”

Cyber-flashing was first reported to cops in 2015.

Since then, incidents have more than doubled year on year, rising from 34 in 2018 to 66 in 2019, freedom of information requests revealed earlier this year.

But campaigners believe this is only the tip of the iceberg.

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