An MP has backed a campaign to tackle harmful posts on social media.

Maldon’s John Whittingdale has shown his support for Wild West Web – the NSPCC’s campaign to regulate tech firms and make children safer online.

Mr Whittingdale was one of 27 MPs who attended the Houses of Parliament for the charity’s event.

For the last year, the children’s charity has been calling on the Government to make social networks legally responsible for protecting children on their sites.

Parents, experts and MPs spoke at the event about why keeping children safe could no longer be left to social networks, because for more than a decade tech firms had failed to follow their own rules and prioritise safeguarding on their sites.

NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “Abusers use social networks to target children, to manipulate them into swapping pictures or performing sex acts over livestreams.

“Regulation could stop this abuse from ever happening in the first place.

“We’ve reached the point where social networks can no longer be left to give this the priority they determine for themselves.

“The need for this sort of regulation is undeniable.

“It is needed urgently to hold social networks to account. This is an opportunity to be on the right side of history.

“This is an opportunity to keep generations of children better protected.”

So far, more than 1,100 members of the public from Essex have signed a petition.

For details, click here.