Theft by Extortion and Fraud Schemes Cases on the Rise
- Reported thefts by extortion are on the rise
- Victims are targeted through social media platforms
- Frequently, it has to do with sexually explicit photos
- Use caution when responding to those you do not know
- Read more...
Extortion over sexual images is on the rise
Over the course of the last several weeks, The Prescott Police Department has been noticing a rise in reported theft by extortion cases, specifically targeting victims through social media platforms.
The suspects in the most recent cases are starting relationships online with the victims. Once they have developed a rapport, they ask the victim to send sexually explicit pictures to them through social media. The suspects then demand money from the victim as payment to not release the photos to family and friends.
We would like to take this opportunity to remind our community members of the dangers of social media sites before they find themselves in a vulnerable spot. Use caution when communicating, especially with people you do not know or just recently met, on social media. Never divulge, post, or otherwise advertise your personal information on social media. Criminals are constantly looking for new ways to prey upon good people. Be suspicious of new friend requests from people you do not know or new message requests. We would recommend not taking or sending compromising photos at any time, but especially not through a social media platform. You simply do not have any control over where your information will end up. Lastly, if you have children, monitor their activity! Know who they are communicating with and the content they are viewing.