Online sex scam warning

Driffield: Advice after man falls victim to sextortion

24 Dec 2015

A Driffield man is the latest to be targeted by online blackmailers posing as women wishing to exchange sexy online chat, explicit videos and pictures.

The 56-year-old was contacted via Facebook by a woman claiming to be a mutual friend.

She later lured the victim into sending explicit pictures and performing sex acts on a video chat application.

A man then told the victim unless he paid £2,500 the videos and pictures would be shared with his friends and family and posted to YouTube.

Officers are highlighting this latest incident in the hope of preventing others falling victim to the scam, as the force has received a number of reports from men who have been similarly targeted.

Some offenders also post further claims that the acts have been performed whilst talking to girls under the age of 16.

There are a number of steps you can take to help prevent yourself from being targeted by similar cons.

These include:

  • Remember that not everyone online is who they claim to be.
  • Don’t ‘friend’ people you don’t know in real life. You don’t know who they really are or what their intentions are.
  • Be wary of using private chat rooms and don’t enter into sexual exchanges.
  • Don’t respond to messages that are provocative or threatening.
  • If someone is aggressive or inappropriate online, most social networking sites have tools to help you block or delete that person.
  • Don’t be embarrassed about seeking help if you need it. Acting quickly can limit the damage if you have sent out something you regret.
  • Change your social media account security settings to prevent ‘Everyone’ been able to find and add you as a friend and send you messages
  • Change your social media account security settings to prevent search engines finding your account profile
  • Change your social media account security settings to prevent ‘Everyone’ from being able to view your posts, view the posts you have been tagged in and the posts that you have shared.

Dc Brittain said: “Reports indicate that this is a growing problem, with thousands of victims across the world – including those living in the Humberside force area.

“However, we do know that given the nature of these offences and the embarrassment victims feel, many don’t come forward.

“I would urge anyone targeted in this way – whether they hand over any money or not – to contact police straight away.

“There are steps we can take to investigate these kind of crimes and we are working closely with the National Crime Agency to share information and collate a picture of this kind of offending at a national level.”

For more information about protecting yourself online, visit the Cyber Security – Has It Clicked? campaign. 

You can also follow @humberbeat #HasItClicked? on Twitter or visit the force Facebook page.