More than 50 percent of girls and women between the age of 15-25 have been cyberstalked, sent explicit messages and photos, been harassed and abused online, according to a new global survey.
The study, conducted by Plan International, revealed that the abuses experienced by the girls forced them to exit social media and left them "traumatised."
14,000 young women from 31 different countries were part of the global survey.
Almost 40 percent said they were attacked on Facebook, but they also spoke about facing similar problems on other platforms, including including Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat, Twitter and TikTok.
'More Likely to Be Harassed Online Than Streets'
Of those surveyed, more than 7,000 girls said that they are more likely to be abused and harassed online than on the streets. One in four girls revealed that the abuse on social media made them feel physically unsafe.
“And in the worst situations, I just felt really unsafe because it confuses me how this one specific guy could find so many details about my life and it made me concerned that he could find my address and come to my house,” said a 23-year-old women, in the report.
Online Abuse Affects Mental Health Of Respondents
At least 42 percent felt a dip in their self-esteem or confidence, after facing inline attack. Another 42 percent said that they were mentally and emotionally stressed because of the same.
18 percent of 14,000 girls and women confided to having problems in studying and schooling, as a result of the abuse.
While 37 percent of the girls who identified themselves to be from an ethnic minority said that they faced abuse due to their community, other 42 percent who identified themselves as members of the LGBTQIA+ community said that they were harassed over their identity.