A scammer blackmails you by threatening to share an intimate image of you to get your money. This is a serious crime, and you should report it to the police immediately.
Scammers target people through dating sites, social media, and gaming apps. They message you out of the blue claiming they have your private images. Or they pretend to be looking for love, then trick you into sending them nude images or videos of yourself or record you during a live video chat with them.
Once the scammer has an intimate image or video of you, they threaten to share it with your family, friends, or people you know unless you give them money.
The scammer will tell you they will delete the image or video if you pay but will keep asking you to pay more money.
Find out more information about sextortion at the esafety Commissioner.
Steps you can take to avoid sextortion
- Be careful about what you share about yourself online.
- Never share naked pictures or videos of yourself with someone you’ve never met in person.
- Cut off contact at once if you suspect you are in contact with a scammer.
- Do not pay the blackmailer or give them more money or intimate images.
- Information on how to stay safe on different social media platforms can be found here.
If you are under 18, the best way to get help with sextortion is to report it to the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE).
Speak to trusted friends or family about the blackmail or contact a confidential counselling and support service.