Texas police department warns parents of alleged sextortion of teens
CIBOLO, Texas (KWTX) - A Texas police department is warning parents on cases of sextortion targeting teens and young adults.
The Cibolo Police Department shared on their Facebook page that the department has seen an increase in reported cases where they are being threatened, coerced or blackmailed into sending money or explicit images online on social media apps or games.
The most common places where Sextortion occurs is on Snapchat and Instagram but can also occur on children’s games such as Roblox or Minecraft.
“The victim often believes they are communicating with someone their own age who is interested in a relationship. The victim is asked to send a revealing or nude photo of themselves often times after first receiving a revealing or nude photo first from the suspect,” said the police.
After the person have one or more pictures of the victim, they will threaten or blackmail the victim into sending money and threatening to put the images on the social media site.
The stress from the situation has caused some teens in other areas of the United States to take their own lives.
Cibolo PD and the FBI recommend that all parents with children who have access to online content talk to their kids about the dangers.
The FBI recommends the following:
1. Be selective about what you share online. If your social media accounts are open to everyone, a predator may be able to figure out a lot of information about you.
2. Be wary of anyone you encounter for the first time online. Block or ignore messages from strangers.
3. Be aware that people can pretend to be anything or anyone online. Videos and photos are not proof that people are who they claim to be. Images can be altered or stolen. In some cases, predators have even taken over the social media accounts of their victims.
4. Be suspicious if you meet someone on one game or app and this person asks you to start talking on a different platform.
5. Be in the know. Any content you create online—whether it is a text message, photo, or video—can be made public. And nothing actually “disappears” online. Once you send something, you don’t have any control over where it goes next.
6. Be willing to ask for help. If you are getting messages or requests online that don’t seem right, block the sender, report the behavior to the site administrator, or go to an adult. If you have been victimized online, tell someone.
For more information on Sextortion you can access resources and information here:
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