Technology

Cybercriminals hunt young Korean women


The types of cybercrime in South Korea are targeting more young women in the country, who are easy victims of sexual assault.

Technological advances in South Korea are becoming a double-edged sword that puts young Korean women under the radar of sex criminals.

According to recent studies, Korea is becoming a global hub for the filming and distribution of sensitive photos and videos.

Digital technology, including HD quality video livestreams and encrypted chat rooms, has brought a new way of distributing sensitive images of Korean women.

“It is unfortunate that South Korea is already ahead of the world in the prevalence, diversity and severity of sex cybercrime,” said Heather Barr, director of women’s rights tracking at the Foundation. Human Rights Watch said.

South Korea currently has the highest percentage of adults using smartphones in the world and is also among the fastest in the world, with 99.5% of households having high-speed internet. This is also the first country to deploy new generation 5G network services.

A report by Human Rights Watch based on interviews with victims shows that sensitive images are often distributed by both strangers and acquaintances of the victim.

Ms. Lee Ye-rin discovered that the watch given to her by a colleague had been filming her bed scene for weeks.

A year after the incident was discovered, she said she still had to take sedatives to combat depression and anxiety.

The sign reminds Korean women how to prevent sex crimes.

Another victim, Ms. Kang Yu-jin, was also forced to quit her job and relocate after a former colleague released private photos of her, along with identifiable details including her home and office address. work.

“There are people who contact me at the church where my parents are celebrating, some even send me messages wanting to spend the night with me. There are also people who come to their homes and workplaces to harass them,” she said.

Research shows that in addition to being stigmatized and harassed, victims are also prone to suicide. Oh Soo-jin, another victim who tried to die but was saved in time.

While cybercrime is not a South Korean story alone, the Human Rights Watch report shows that the country lacks the necessary measures to protect victims and properly punish criminals.

Last year, an event that shocked Korea was a secret chat room that was revealed. The event was called the ‘nth chat room’, with a 40-year prison sentence for the leader. But it could not remove the thousands of photos of young Korean girls, including children, that were spread among Telegram groups of more than 260,000 members.

According to Korea’s Women’s Human Rights Institute, the number of cases involving the filming of sensitive images and videos of women reached nearly 7,000 in the past year, an increase of 70% compared to 2019.

Of these, only a few cases were revealed such as the sex chat room of Seungri (former member of Big Bang). Prosecutors handled 44% of cyber sex crimes cases in 2019, of which nearly 80% were found guilty without probation, fines or both in 2020, Human Rights Watch right to say.

Cybercriminals hunt young Korean women
Seungri (centre) was tied and handcuffed during the trial with 9 charges, then prosecuted without detention.

Last year, a court in South Korea rejected an extradition request from the United States in the case of a man convicted of running the world’s largest child pornography website. This person was only sentenced to 18 months in prison for violating the Korean Child Protection Act.

A female Air Force sergeant committed suicide last month, after being sexually harassed by her colleague and the Air Force’s attempt to cover it up. Her death sparked public outrage, forcing air force commander Lee Seong-yong to resign earlier this month.

South Korea is currently ranked 102nd out of 156 countries in the World Economic Forum’s report on closing the gender gap in 2021, with the largest gender gap in the group of developed countries.

According to Human Rights Watch, Korean women currently work four times as many unpaid jobs as men and earn 32.5% less.

*Names of characters in the post have been changed

Phuong Nguyen (according to FT.com)

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