Police recorded more than 1,300 offences relating to child abuse images in the past two years, new figures show.
Statistics gathered by children’s charity NSPCC show there were a total of 1,307 offences recorded by Police Scotland, with an average of one offence recorded every 23 minutes across the UK as a whole.
The charity is calling for more action to stop paedophiles using social media to groom victims, and wants an independent regulator established to hold technology companies to account.
According to the charity, the number of child abuse image offences recorded by police across the UK in 2017/18 rose by almost a quarter in a year to 22,724.
A single offence recorded by police can involve hundreds of indecent images of children.
Tony Stower, NSPCC’s head of child safety online, said: “Every one of these images represents a real child who has been groomed and abused to supply the demand of this appalling trade.
“The lack of adequate protections on social networks has given offenders all too easy access to children to target and abuse.”
The charity said the higher number of offences did not necessarily mean a higher prevalence of images.