Before you take an intimate picture of yourself intending to send it to your boyfriend or girlfriend, first be aware that once you hit send, the picture may fall into the wrong hands, either intentionally or unintentionally.
Take Legal Action
If you know that an intimate picture of you has fallen into the wrong hands and is being distributed and you would like it to stop, you can take legal action. Canada now has a law to help deal with the non-consensual distribution of an intimate image. This law is based on the premise that it is illegal for a person to distribute an intimate picture of another person without that person’s consent. The person distributing the image, by either posting it online (like on a social media site for example) or by sharing it with their friends, could potentially be charged criminally. Since this is a serious charge, it would need to be clear that the person in the picture is you.
Take Action to Have it Removed
If the image is posted on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, you can contact them to ask them to take it down. These days, many social media platforms have technology that recognizes these types of illicit pictures but sometimes some of them do fall through the cracks. In your message to the social media platform, inform them that you are a Canadian citizen who did not post the picture or video, rather someone else did it without your consent and that you would like it removed immediately.
Don’t Take Intimate Photos in the First Place
One of the simplest ways to not get yourself in a sticky situation when it comes to having intimate photos of yourself distributed is to simply not distribute photos of this nature. If there is no photo, there is no way it can fall into the wrong hands.
Stop Speaking to the Person Who is Distributing the Picture
Once you have found out who is distributing the intimate picture of you and you have told them that you do not want this to continue and have asked them to stop, leave it at that. Go to the police, message your social media platforms, but don’t keep engaging with this person. The last thing you want to do is make them mad and have the situation escalate further. Who knows, if they get angry, they may share it with more people or post it on more sites.
You must be very careful when taking intimate photos. Even if you’re just sending them to your boyfriend or girlfriend, things may go south one day and then who knows what they will end up doing with the photo.
What to do if you are being investigated for distributing intimate images
On the flip side, if you are accused of distributing intimate images without consent, you must obtain legal advice at the earliest opportunity. It is treated as a serious offence and can carry jail time as a penalty, even for a first timer.
If you want to speak with a lawyer at Armoured Suits because you feel that someone is using an image of yours without consent, we offer a paid consultation option.
If you have been charged with distributing an intimate image and would like to speak to a lawyer about your rights, we also offer a free 30-minute phone consultation to answer all of your questions. Contact us by phone at 613-233-0008 or e-mail at [email protected] to schedule your meeting.