Recent figures uncovered using freedom of information laws show that between January 2012 and June 2014 8 Police forces across the UK dealt with 149 incidents which involved revenge porn.

In 2015 in just six months 14 forces dealt with a 139 cases of the offence.

It has been suggested that celebrities including Rhianna and Tulisa have fallen victim to the cruel practice.

The substantial rise in reported offences in the 6 months leading to April of this year has led to 13 people being charged or cautioned over the offence, double the number who ended up being charged or cautioned between 2012 and 2014.

According to the official figures the youngest victim of the offence was only 11 years of age and the eldest a pensioner.

In February the government introduced a specific criminal offence of “Revenge Porn” under which jilted lovers who posted explicit images of their ex partners online will face up to two years in jail.

This followed the Crown Prosecution Service publishing new guidelines for how the Police and they would deal with revenge porn offences within existing legislation.

These includes cases where intimate images are sent in a bid to force someone into sexual activity which could see the sender jailed for up to 14 years.

In November last year, a man who posted naked pictures of his ex girlfriend on the internet became one of the first to be jailed for revenge porn.

Liam King, 21, was imprisoned for 12 weeks after pleading guilty to harassment by posting intimate pictures online of an ex girlfriend who spurned him.

As social media becomes increasingly common and part of every day life along with the advantages of benefits that it brings it clearly also brings with it risk as people take and transmit images without giving any thought to how they may ultimately be used or where they may end up.

Because of this increasing issue when our clients seek support and assistance from us to secure non molestation injunctions for their personal protection we are increasingly advising and securing injunctions which prohibit the use of social media to intimidate and harass our clients.

If you would like to discuss this or any other family law issue please contact Peter Marshall, a partner in our family law team on 01762 74433 or email family.staustell@stephens-scown.co.uk with any queries.