Sextorsion - what to do ?

Sextorsion - what to do ?

Since the lockdown, webcam scams are on the rise again. How to avoid being tricked?

Scenario of a webcam scam

It's 7 p.m., and you’re feeling a little bored. You're surfing on a dating site or app. You're browsing purposelessly, and suddenly, you can't believe your eyes - this hottie has noticed you and they want to chat !

Charmed by your contact's good looks and clever message, you decide to answer. The discussion starts, the person actually answers - it’s obvious that it is a real person, not a bot. And suddenly, they suggest a webcam chat. Hmm, would be a nice change from all the pointless video meetings you've been doing since remote working became the norm... you accept. The discussion heats up and you end up undressing in front of the camera, or sending a few naughty pictures... this evening that was supposed to be boring is not completely lost!

You almost forget about it. Until you receive the email or the message via Facebook Messenger.


At first, it is the hacker who contacts you - threatening to make the incriminating content public if you don’t pay a hefty sum - often several thousand dollars or euros. You recognize your photos or videos. You are devastated and a bit ashamed - how could you fall for such an obvious scam? 

But you've been reading this kinds of articles for ages now, so you know better. You don’t answer. These hackers run thousands of scams in parallel, and only deal with the people who respond. Hopefully, you’ll be fine. But somehow you can’t stop worrying deep down.


A few weeks later, the second message arrives. It no longer comes from some African country as it once did, but from Interpol, a local police department, or YouTube. It is well written, without typos, with all the official logos. It’s claiming that you exposed yourself to a minor, and that you will be prosecuted,  unless you pay a fine right away.

How to be sure? 

You probably already know you're dealing with a scam. But to be really sure

What should I do?



I don't use dating sites, I’m safe!

Well, not really. 

Webcam scams exist outside dating sites and apps. You can be victim of one on Facebook (the most used) Instagram or even LinkedIn. You’re using Snapchat, you are protected?  The content can be easily be saved even if it’s supposed to go away.

On social media, a friend request can lead to the same pattern - except it might last for weeks or even months ! 

Next week, we'll se how to protect your content on YouTube, Soundcloud, Bandcamp !

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