Sextortion online scam: how to defend yourself
In this article we will discuss Sextortion, a practice that is widespread in the social age.
In this regard, we might also suggest you read another article dealing with ransomware, click here, which also analyzes the scourge of online blackmail.
Returning to Sextortion, let us first analyze the meaning of the term.
A compound term, from Sex and Extorsion, which implies the threat of dissemination and publication of sexual images or videos depicting the victim.
How entrapment takes place and what it consists of
This is sexual blackmail that can be met through social channels. In contrast to “Revenge Porn” the extortionist probably does not know the victim live and does not act for revenge but for money.
Moreover, extortion does not occur solely in one mode; in fact, once compromising data or videos have been obtained, the extortionist may act in a variety of ways, including rather convincing ones.
Thus ensnaring the victim in a spiral of events, a trap from which it will be difficult to get out.
According to the latest data from the postal police, the most frequent victims are teenagers between 15 and 17 years old, easily lured and curious to explore their sexuality.
Thus also exploiting their shame, the extortionist is almost certain that parents will not be alerted. Therefore, there will almost certainly be no complaint.
How blackmail occurs
Blackmail is carried out only after gaining the victim’s trust and succeeding in seizing images or videos that unequivocally depict them in obscene acts.
Thus immortalizing the victim’s genitals, masturbation or whatever else in chat or video conferencing, through thus a direct connection between victim and extortionist.
This is the most frequent mode, but not the only one. In fact, it is also possible for these images to be sold, given away, traded, or otherwise stolen, thus without direct contact between the victim and the extortionist.
So the first step involves the extortionist first having to prove that they have compromising material in their hands.
Then the extortionist proceeds to demand an initial ransom, on the threat of publication, more material or some money is often demanded, very small amounts of money as a first step.
Psychology of the victim
A succession of events is then created, an escalation of successive extortions. An increasing of demands that leads to the victim never coming out again.
The first extortion in fact serves only to raise the stakes, the victim in fact gives in thinking he can get away with little but unknowingly only provides additional tools with which the extortionist can blackmail him.
The victim if she has paid a first extortion will want to avoid losing the money she has already paid, so she will be more likely to accept a new extortion in the hope that it will be her last.
Finally still, in the event of a lawsuit, there is the certainty that the extortionist will go so far as to publish the material obtained up to that point.
Sextortion is a crime in its own right, and it is important to report it as soon as possible.
Not reporting it means putting the extortionist in a position of power, from which it is difficult to budge. Failure to report prevents those who should be investigating from knowing what is going on so that they can intervene quickly.
What not to do in case of Sextorsion
The first thing to do after experiencing sextortion is definitely a report to law enforcement. Next, it is important to check the security of one’s social and phone accounts.
If necessary change credentials, where possible reinforce with 2FA (two-factor) systems, and if possible make your social accounts private.
In the case of Facebook you can set in the privacy parameters to accept tags only to friends, you can block unwanted people or people close to the person you would like to remove.
However, the extortionist will be able to create second or third profiles, so it is crucial to avoid accepting any new friend requests, especially from strangers, for at least a month or so.
An example, on the other hand, of something not to do at all is to insult or threaten the extortionist in your turn; in fact, the extortionist may report you in turn before you do. Thus getting priority from law enforcement.
We at Made hope with this article that we have managed to be helpful to you.