Genital warts is caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV) and is transmitted during unprotected sex. It can also be spread through skin-to-skin contact. Like other viral infections, there will usually not be any symptoms initially, with some outbreaks not occurring for up to a year. As a result a person who has been infected with the virus will not usually know until a visible outbreak occurs. Symptoms include small fleshy lumps externally and in some cases internally around the genital area. Although this STI cannot be cured, and will subsequently remain in your system until the next outbreak, symptoms can be controlled and significantly reduced with treatment.