Last week YouTube and TikTok joined the list of social media platforms banning Pornhub amid allegations the website is profiting from child pornography and non-consensual content posted on the platform. The ban from both sites follows Instagram’s decision this fall to suspend the porn company’s accounts. Pornhub is already trying to exploit the ban however, publishing ‘Banned from YouTube’ and ‘Banned TikTok porn’ pages trying to further advocate it’s XXX content.

The decision by TikTok and YouTube came following a continued push by the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, which has been assisting victims of child abuse, rape, and other explicit and non-consensual video posts.

“TikTok joins several mainstream companies that have made the principled decision to deny Pornhub another avenue from which to profit off exploitation. Pornhub, the purveyor of child sexual abuse material, rape, sex trafficking, sexual violence, and extreme racism has no place on a social media platform like TikTok that is extremely popular with children,” said Dawn Hawkins, CEO of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.

A history of controversy

This isn’t Pornhub’s first battle concerning illegal videos on the site. The website has faced ongoing allegations and a series of lawsuits involving victims who say the site profits from child molestation, rape, and other criminal activities. We’ve previously cautioned security clearance holders that given the site’s ongoing issues, individuals should proceed with caution when consuming content.

Sexual behavior is an adjudicative guideline, and Pornhub’s issue present a perfect example of how sexual behavior can come up in a way that could cost you your security clearance. When applying with the Intelligence Community or for a law enforcement job, you may undergo a polygraph, and you may get specific questions around sexual behavior or pornography. It’s also fairly common for individuals to self-admit sexual content they’ve consumed that made them feel uncomfortable (polygraphs have a way of doing that to people, and that’s why they’re still used). Given Pornhub’s clear issues with illegally acquired content, a red flag should remain up for any clearance holder viewing pornography.

The prevalence of porn is an issue RAND has previously identified in a study concerning emerging clearance issues for young people. Early exposure to porn, and the continued veracity of content sharing platforms – including those for explicit content – make sexual behavior an adjudicative guideline that could emerge for more clearance applicants, even as sexual mores change.

Addiction is another matter worth noting in any conversation involving pornography, and one both clearance holders and applicant’s shouldn’t hesitate to address – whether they’re applying for a security clearance or already have one. Any behavior can become self-destructive when done compulsively, and pornographic websites are like other apps on the internet – designed to draw you in and keep you there. Organizations like Sex Addicts Anonymous exist to offer resources and help for those struggling. Don’t let shame or stigma keep you from getting help.

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Lindy Kyzer is the director of content at Have a conference, tip, or story idea to share? Email Interested in writing for Learn more here.. @LindyKyzer