Are social networking apps like WhatsApp helping sex slavery?


Social networking apps have completely changed the way humans interact with each other without boundaries of time and geography but there is also a dark side to them. According to this Business Insider update, sex slavery might be thriving on WhatsApp and other such social networking apps. Instances of sex slavery mostly come from conflict zones around the world, for example, the ISIS-controlled regions in Syria and Iraq, but technology has enabled people carrying out sex slavery to communicate better and reach prospective “buyers” in a quicker way. I guess most people would wish they could just use technology and new rising tech to visit sites like but there will always be seedy people that go 10 steps too far.

Although internationally slavery is not allowed and it has been declared illegal in almost every civilised country, in many regions of the world, it is still thriving. Unlike in other parts of the world where the women have control over their choices, be it with the escort Paris has to offer or with those who run their own porn empires online, women of the conquered tribe or village or town are considered as war spoils and they are often sold to the highest bidders openly as the rest of the world witnesses the barbarity with great pain and a sense of helplessness (which might be self-imposed for political reasons).

According to the data available, more than 5000 Yazidi women, children and men are enslaved by the Islamic State at the moment (source). Terrorist organisations like ISIS and Boko Haram even have how-to manuals on how to treat slaves. These slaves are not just used for sex, they are also forcibly used as suicide bombers.

Sex slavery, unfortunately, is not just limited to conflict zones. Social networking apps like WhatsApp and Telegram have enabled the perpetrators of sex slavery to make their “bounty” available to men even in countries like Australia, Belgium, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Libya and Egypt. Islamic extremists have used encrypted communications apps like Telegram and WhatsApp to carry out online slave auctions, sharing details of Yazidi women including their photographs, age, marital status, current location and price.

Recently an attempt was made to sell two sex slaves on Facebook.

About Sarah Watts
Sarah is a technology buff. Not uptight about her writing skills, but when it comes to covering technology, she is a no holds barred writer.

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