Source: The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy
Author(s): Habiba Abdelaal
While increasing access to the internet aims to pave the way for a more equitable and inclusive world, the weaponization of the internet and other technologies against women has grown commonplace. The internet and social media together have become a new frontline for violence against women and girls, and this phenomenon has increased exponentially during COVID-19 and related lockdowns. More and more, texting, email, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and just about any other internet, social media, and messaging platform are being used to perpetrate violence against women.
Cyber violence against women takes many forms, including cyber harassment, cyberstalking, defamation, non-consensual pornography, hate speech, cyber hacking, and public shaming. The number and diversity of perpetrators are also increasing. For example, blackmailers are capitalizing on honey traps, private images and videos are being hacked, and cyber scammers are making fake profiles on various social media platforms, dating sites, and messaging apps to lure potential victims.
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