Cabinet has approved new legislation to criminalize the sharing of intimate images without a person's consent.
Under the new laws, someone may be jailed for up to seven years if they have published abusive material with the intent of causing harm.
Someone found to be forwarding the material on after receiving it could be jailed for up to 12 months or be fined up to five thousand euro.
The measures were approved by the cabinet today after it emerged last week that thousands of images of Irish women were leaked online.
Justice Minister Helen McEntee is hopeful the new laws will be enacted before the end of the year:
"This is going to the Justice Committee next week on December 1st. Obviously, we have four weeks left of Dáil committee, so it would be my hope that this could be passed by both the Dail and the Seanad before the end of the year.
"Obviously, it would require the full support of all members of the House, but that is a commitment I made and something I really would like to stick to."