Nearly half of women tend not to raise the alarm when they are subjected to sexual harassment because they fear the consequences, a survey suggests.

The National Human Rights Commission of Korea polled 450 working women and 350 female university students.

Some 40.2 percent of respondents said they would not raise the issue when they are sexually harassed. Fear of the complaints rebounding on their own reputation was the biggest reason with 20.8 percent of the group, and fear of a negative impact on their career came second with 14.4 percent.

Fear of more emotional distress came in third with 13.8 percent, while 10.2 percent said they would find the prospect of having to face the aggressor too difficult.

Of those who reported having experienced some form of sexual harassment, the most common form was off-color remarks with 33.8 percent, followed by comments on how someone's looks or dresses with 30 percent.

Other uncomfortable situations included speculation about the women's sex life, being forced to serve alcohol or sit next to certain people of the opposite sex during social gatherings.

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