“Sextortion” or cyber-enabled blackmail is a serious crime causing concern to police around the world and here in Queensland.
It happens when someone threatens to distribute your private and sensitive material if you don’t provide them further images of a sexual nature, sexual favours or money.
While computers have enabled us to connect with people from all over the world, they also allow criminals to extort you, tricking you into sending private intimate images or recording consensual acts that you perform via webcam and then threatening to post them to your work, school, family and friends unless you send money, further images or perform sexual acts.
ACORN (Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network) receives complaints of sextortion every week from men, women and young victims.
To keep yourself safe, do not send intimate pictures of yourself, especially ones that identify you to people online. Remember, once it’s on the internet, it’s there for life.
If you are “sextorted” do not panic, do not send any money or further images and report it immediately to police. The offenders will continue to extort you if you start complying with their demands.
This video from the National Crime Agency highlights the harsh reality of sextortion.
Before you get caught up in the online world, ask yourself – R U in Control of your images?