September 1, 2017 12:28 am

Victoria police warn of extortion that coaxes victims into sending ‘compromising’ photos

Global News File

The Victoria Police Department (VicPD) has issued a warning following a “disturbing online trend” in which individuals have been extorted into sending compromising pictures of themselves.

Police said victims are contacted by an anonymous person via social media who claims to have a lot of money.

The individual then promises large sums of money in exchange for compromising pictures.

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The anonymous person then uses those images to extort more pictures out of victims.

The extortion involves threats to send the pictures to friends and family, using information found on the victims’ social media profiles.

Police said the suspect has successfully obtained pictures in some cases but that no money is known to have been exchanged in this scheme.

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“The anonymity provided by the internet means that these investigations are often very complex and difficult to investigate,” said Det. Cst. Justin Munro of the Special Victims Unit.

“We encourage anyone who receives this type of request to ignore it and to report it to their local police department.”

Police are urging people to ensure that their online identities are secure, to restrict the personal info they put on social media, and to ignore any “unsolicited requests for any information from unknown parties.”

They also urged parents to be involved in their kids’ social media activities.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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