Listen Live

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
HomeNewsCampbell RCMP warn of new internet extortion scheme

Campbell RCMP warn of new internet extortion scheme

- Advertisement -

Police in Campbell River are getting the word out about a new ‘internet extortion scheme’ making the rounds, taking advantage of locals.

According to Cst. Maury Tyre, this month alone, police have received numerous complaints regarding the scheme, which appears to feed off the openness of Facebook video chats and other sites.

“An attractive individual who claims you have mutual friends sends you a friend request and then quite quickly will request a video chat,” Tyre says.

“They claim their audio is broken, so they type with the victim and then start to take off their clothes and sexually gratify themselves. When they do this, they request the victim do the same.”

- Advertisement -

However, the scammer isn’t actually live on video. Based on complaints received, police think the video is prerecorded, with the person typing likely at a call centre somewhere in Eastern Europe.

“The moment the victim disrobes, they start to receive messages advising them that what they are doing is being recorded,” Tyre explains, “and then the scammer demands money or they will release the video to all contacts on the victim’s friends lists.”

Similar to many phone scams, he says the scammers use a ‘high-pressure sales tactic’ to get people to send money quickly before realizing what they’re doing.

According to Tyre, there are some simple tips to protect yourself on the internet:

- Advertisement -
  • First and foremost, don’t get naked on the internet, your internet data is forever;
  • If you choose to get naked on the internet, confirm you know who you are dealing with;
  • Most scam accounts haven’t been around that long and have few actual friends;
  • If you believe you are being scammed, immediately cut contact with the scammer;
  • Report the scammer’s profile to the site provider (eg. Facebook);
  • You may wish to close your account down (no account, no friends list to send video to);
  • Do not send money, these individuals are playing a bulk game, typically if they can’t get anything they move on.

“The best-case scenario on the internet is to conduct yourself like the world is watching, because they are,” Tyre adds. “People forget this in all aspects of internet use from time to time. In modern times, how you portray yourself on the internet can have serious effects on your life.”

He continues, “Before you hit send, or venture onto a site, it may be worthwhile to think WWGT (What would Grandma think?). If she would be horrified, then maybe don’t talk or act that way on the internet or at all, it could save you a great deal of trouble in the long run. It may seem prudish to some, but it’s important for people to remember, many internet criminals operate outside of the boundaries of law enforcement, and as such a great deal of the work regarding internet crimes is prevention.”

Due to the nature of this kind of internet fraud, Tyre says potential cases often go unreported. If you’ve been a victim of fraud or extortion, you’re urged to call the Campbell River RCMP at (250) 286-6221.

- Advertisement -
- Advertisment -

Now playing play

- Advertisment -