Ask Trish: Help! I’m The Victim of Non-Consensual Sexual Deepfake

“Trish, someone recently made an AI image of me where I was naked and is sharing it online. I’m humiliated.…

Jun 11, 2024

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By Trisha Prabhu

“Trish, someone recently made an AI image of me where I was naked and is sharing it online. I’m humiliated. How do I stop the image from spreading?”

Hi, everyone, and welcome back to another week of Ask Trish.

First and foremost, to this week’s question-er, thank you so much for your bravery; this is not an easy experience to share/talk about. I also want to say how incredibly sorry I am that you’re going through this – no one should ever be in this position. And yet, over the last year, I have spoken with dozens of young people – mostly young women – across the US that are experiencing similar harms. And because this is such a new phenomena, egged on by the development and release of new AI technologies, a lot of parents and educators don’t quite know how to deal with it. But there are steps you can take to protect yourself/your mental wellbeing and to prevent offending content from spreading – and in this week’s post, I’ll offer you a brief guide to exactly that. I’ll first i) talk through what non-consensual sexual deepfakes are and ii) then share how victims can take action. Of course, this is, as stated, a brief guide, and should be a starting place in your research/your outreach. Be open with and brainstorm with trusted adults – they are your best resource as you face this tough challenge.

Let’s get into it:

First and foremost, what exactly is this situation? What might you call the offending image? Well, the technical term is a non-consensual sexual deepfake. Let’s break that down. Non-consensual means that one party – most likely, the subject of the image – did not agree to that image’s creation. Sexual, of course, means that the image in question is sexualized, whether it depicts a naked body, sex acts, or anything similar. And a deepfake (as I recently explored in another Ask Trish post) is some content – usually an image or video – that depicts a person/persons’ likeness or face (though the content can also depict other things, like events!) but is, in fact, digitally manipulated. So the likeness, face, or event is depicted in a way that is false, inauthentic, or inaccurate. Deepfakes are generated via artificial intelligence technology, and in recent years, they’ve become incredibly realistic/hard to distinguish from authentic content. Of course, in the case of a non-consensual sexual deepfake, that’s incredibly scary. Victims of these fake, sexualized images often struggle to convince recipients/viewers that the content is false and suffer real reputational, professional, and mental damages. And as I mentioned in my intro, non-consensual sexual deepfakes are not one-off events anymore. Just last year, at a New Jersey high school, a group of male students created sexually explicit deepfakes of female classmates. And on, and on, and on…Policymakers are sounding the alarm bells, noting that this type of content/experience constitutes sexual violence, and it is not okay. Even with all of the attention, though, victims can often feel isolated, forgotten, and helpless. Said one young woman I spoke to a few months ago: “I just felt powerless.”

So what can you do if you find yourself in this situation? Having talked to a lot of young people, of lot of experts, a lot of educators, and a lot of parents, this is what I would recommend:

  1. First and foremost, do not panic. Take a few deep breaths. So many of the young people I’ve spoken with referenced how they felt like their lives “were over” after they became victims of non-consensual sexual deepfakes. Your life is not over. Your life is still rich, valuable, and important. You are still meaningful. And your story is not and will not be defined by this moment. No harasser can define your story for you. This is no doubt a deeply painful, traumatic event, one that will take time to heal from. But don’t let that initial fear you feel consume you. As hard as it may be, stay calm and remember: “this is not my fault, and it’s going to be okay.” 
  1. Turn to a trusted adult. A lot of victims of non-consensual sexual deepfakes feel shame, shame that can deter them from going to an adult. But you have nothing to be ashamed of, and every reason to ask for help. Whether it’s a parent, counselor, or educator, please – talk to someone. They can help you get to the source of the problem and shut it down, straight away.
  1. Do some documenting. If you come across any evidence that might indicate who created/is possibly spreading the deep fake(s), make sure to screenshot/save it. (Don’t count on the fact that it will be there later…it might not be!) If this is difficult for you to do – which I completely understand – do this with a friend or ideally, a trusted adult. And this is going to be a recurring theme here: please, please turn to a trusted adult. They are your best resource – and can offer you so much support – in navigating a situation like this.
  1. If the deepfake is circulating on platforms, take a look at platform policies. Many platforms prohibit certain types of sexual content. If you can pinpoint the policy that the content violates, you can report it – and get it taken down. Ask your friends and family to join you in reporting the content.
  1. Possibly go to law enforcement. If you’re a minor, you’re entitled to certain protections, including protections from non-consensual sexual deepfakes. If you and an adult feel like you’re not able to adequately troubleshoot the problem yourselves, turn to law enforcement. They will support you!

Again, to anyone reading this that’s currently struggling through this challenge, I’m so very sorry that you’re in this position. But remember – it’s going to be okay, you/your life are still meaningful, and there are plenty of actions you can take, alongside adults, to protect yourself. Now, more than ever, is the moment to put yourself first.

Whether you’re going through something similar or pondering other internet-related topics, I invite you to share any questions or thoughts with me here. I’ll always be here with advice and support – so ask away.

With love,



Being the victim of a non-consensual sexual deep fake can be an incredibly scary situation. What do you do if this happens to you? In this week’s post, Trish offers her advice. Check out the suggestions — link in bio ⬆️ #ai

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