Sexual harassment against women on online platforms has increased in the country. Women are subjected to harassment by various methods like being sent obscene, sexually abusive messages and pictures, fake social media profiles and so on.
A research report by ActionAid titled 'Violence against women online in Bangladesh' revealed that about 64 per cent of women are victims of violence online which is 14 per cent higher than the previous year. Women are mostly falling victim of violence on social media, Facebook, and Messenger.
The report was presented at a programme, 'Stop online violence against women: challenges and way forward', at the BRAC Centre in Mohakhali as part of 16 Days of Activism to End Violence Against Women.
It also said that 65 per cent of women victims of violence suffer from depression and anxiety. However, 85 per cent of women do not seek redressal due to the perception that 'filing complaints is useless'.
As many as 514 women internet users took part in the survey conducted for the study from 11 to 18 November. Of them, 359 women answered all the questions. Apart from this, girls and women from rural areas have participated in six group discussions in six districts.
Farah Kabir, country director of ActionAid Bangladesh, said that women are being abused in every sector - family, society and state. They have faced repression in various ways. Online violence against women is on the rise with the advent of technology. Adolescents and girls under the age of 18 are particularly victims of such violence.
According to ActionAid's research, there are 12 types of violence against women online. In 80 per cent of these cases, women receive obscene, hurtful, sexually objectionable and hateful comments. Besides, 53 per cent of women were sexually harassed by being send porn to their inboxes.