The Department of Education’s definition of child sexual exploitation is:
Child sexual exploitation is a form of child sexual abuse. It occurs where an individual or a group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under the age of 18 into sexual activity:
- in exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or
- for the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator. The victim may have been sexually exploited even if the sexual activity appears consensual.
Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology.