Sextortion (Sexual Blackmail)
The most prevalent type of blackmail we face in our business is sextortion. Webcam blackmail, internet blackmail, cyber harassment, and online extortion are some terms for it. Many states have implemented revenge porn and ابتزاز laws, realising that this sort of crime is becoming increasingly common. While state laws vary, سايبر sextortion is usually characterised as a perpetrator threatening to disclose sexual content (texts, photographs, or videos) unless you agree with their demands.
Unfortunately, skilled sextortionists and sextortion rings scam many victims. Perpetrators may construct a false persona (catfishing) and encourage their victims to send naked photographs or engage in sexual actions on a webcam. Once they have obtained the graphic material, they begin threatening to reveal it unless they are paid or further sexual acts are done. They may also begin sharing sexual information to friends and relatives over social media in order to instil dread in the victim.
Perpetrators frequently target people who they believe have the capacity to pay as well as those who have a reputation to uphold. In 2019, there were 43,101 known extortion victims who lost a total of $107.5 million to extortionists.
Celebrities are often victims of extortion because criminals frequently target individuals with a reputation to uphold and the capacity to pay. Here are a few examples of the wealthy and famous who have been subjected to blackmail:
A photographer threatened to sell topless photographs and videos of Cameron Diaz in 2003. Diaz was 21 years old when the photographs were shot, years before she rose to popularity as an actress. Diaz said that the photographer threatened to expose the hidden sexual content if she did not pay him. Ultimately, the photographer was found guilty of attempted grand theft, forgery, and lying.
A former CBS News producer promised to expose late-night television presenter David Letterman’s sexual relationships unless he was given $2 million in “hush money” in 2009. While Letterman agreed to the extortionist’s demands and paid the $2 million, he called the District Attorney of New York, who filed charges. The offender was sentenced to six months in prison after pleading guilty to attempted second-degree grand theft.
Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon, is a recent example. In a statement on the publishing site Medium in 2019, Bezos accused the National Enquirer and its parent business of extortion. Bezos claimed in particular that the Enquirer got text conversations exposing his connection with TV presenter Lauren Sanchez. He said that when he began investigating how the tabloid acquired those communications, the Enquirer threatened to publish personal photographs of him unless he stopped.