Online abuse 'leaves an indelible footprint on an individual's life', warns former Culture Secretary Maria Miller

Online abuse 'leaves a footprint on an individual's life', says Maria Miller

Maria Miller

Friday, April 15, 2016

Former Culture Secretary Maria Miller has warned that online abuse leaves 'an indelible footprint' on the life of a victim. 

The MP for Basingstoke has called for a review on laws surrounding 'trolling', saying that "we need to make the internet work for us, not against us."

Miller, who successfully lobbied for legislation to criminalise 'revenge porn' in 2014, says the issue has grown into a common problem because culture has absorbed the internet and social media completely.

"Social media and our phones are part of everyday life," she told Julia Hartley-Brewer. "They're embedded into peoples' lives. My concern is how online abuse is affecting young people and their views on relationships. It can leave an indelible footprint on an individual's life."

The former cabinet minister insisted the onus is on the government to take a firm stance against online abuse. 

"There are some compelling reasons to take rapid action, not only to reform the law and train police, but to educate people they can be committing a criminal offence with activity they think they can get away with because it's anonymous.

"We need to get people to sense the responsibility they need to take when they use social media."