A legal analyst and advocate for combating sexual abuse has exposed how she was targeted by strangers using the in-flight chat system on her Virgin Atlantic flight.

During her trans-Atlantic flight this weekend other passengers used the 'seat chat' system to bombard Jessica Van Meir with sexually explicit messages, and unsolicited advances.

One passenger seated just nine rows away used the anonymous messaging system to call her a "tidy babe." Before long the chat was joined by two additional airline trolls using the aliases "big d*** swinger" and "dirty mike".

"Welcome to hell" came the taunts.

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Welcome to hell: Van Meir was shocked to be bombarded by abuse. Photo / Supplied
Welcome to hell: Van Meir was shocked to be bombarded by abuse. Photo / Supplied

Van Meir, a legal advocate against this sort of behaviour and worse, was not going to be bullied.

She replied confidently: "I work for a law firm that specialises in online sexual harassment. Enjoy being reported to Virgin."

However, this did not stop the abusive messages on the eight hour flight.

Van Meir currently works for the legal office of McAllister Olivarius, in the UK.

She told the trolls of their mistake, but abuse kept coming. Photo / Supplied
She told the trolls of their mistake, but abuse kept coming. Photo / Supplied

Turning to Twitter Van Meir aimed to publicly shame the trolls and draw attention to the issue with the airline's messaging system being exploited.

"The flight attendants were helpful and dealt with it swiftly," she said in a tweet, asking "Have any other women had this happen to them?"

"Virgin Atlantic, you should probably take measures to prevent this from happening by flagging specific language and putting in place a reporting function on the chat to report abusive users."

Virgin Atlantic's "Seat to Seat" chat system works like other airlines', using the entertainment system to allow passengers to communicate and even play games across the seat screens.

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However this connectivity to strangers seated elsewhere on a plane has some flaws that can be exploited and used to harass other passengers.

"We were extremely concerned to hear of the incident reported on-board one of our flights and are investigating as a matter of urgency," the Airline said in a statement to the Daily Mail.

Van Meir received an apology from the airline. Photo / Supplied
Van Meir received an apology from the airline. Photo / Supplied

"We want all of our customers to have the best possible experience when they fly with us, and have zero tolerance for any disruptive or inappropriate behaviour.

"We're grateful to our cabin crew who supported our customer following this incident and would like to apologise for the distress caused. We are now reviewing our entertainment systems to ensure this does not happen again."

Van Meir says she received an apology from customer relations, saying "I appreciate their following up on it and hope they'll take measures to prevent this and other forms of sexual harassment from happening to others.

She call the seat chat a "fun function" saying "I'm not against it, but it can be easily abused."

Last year passenger Ysolda Teague accused a passenger of 'cyber flashing' her on a British Airways plane by broadcasting pictures of his genitals via bluetooth.

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