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Sexting and cyberbulling have become realities for many youth with access to digital devices.

Read: Victim of cyber harassment? Know when to take legal action

Social media lawyer Emma Sadleir has warned that parents need to equip themselves and be informed about what their children are using their devices for.

These issues are starting younger and younger and parents are duty-bound to have these conversations with their children as a matter of urgency.

Emma Sadleir, social media law expert

She says that parents should have conversations with their children to raise awareness about the dangers of sexting and cyber harassment.

If you have a child that's starting to use these platforms, or if you have given them a cellphone, you absolutely have to find out what apps they are using, who they're talking to and what they're doing.

Emma Sadleir, social media law expert

Sadleir cautions that many children are given cellphones far too young, with unrestricted access and very little parental supervision.

It's an issue we need to talk and think about. It's become a societal norm for teenagers to be sexting, to send naked pictures and for them to be put on the internet.

Emma Sadleir, social media law expert

We see that these (nude) photographs have become almost social currency for the youngsters.

Emma Sadleir, social media law expert

She explains the distribution of nude pictures involving minors (under 18) is a criminal offence under and deemed as child pornography under The Films and Publications Act.

Meanwhile, Parliament has opened the Cybercrime and Cybersecurity Bill for public comment.

The bill aims to criminalises online crimes such as cyber-bullying, revenge porn and 'sextortion'.

Take a listen to her expert insights and legal remedies:

This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Are you talking to your teen about 'sexting'? Here's why you urgently should

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