Children caught in online blackmail

A concerning story from the United Kingdom a few weeks ago involving children being blackmailed. The Independent reports:

The blackmailing of children has emerged as a fast-growing new method employed by sadistic abusers who operate behind fake profiles on social networks to take advantage of youthful sexual experimentation and snare their victims, driving some to self-harm and even suicide.

…grooming often starts on open chat forums before moving to private areas where the talk swiftly becomes more explicit. The threats usually start after children have been tricked into posting compromising pictures of themselves that they fear could be distributed more widely.

Although this story concerns the United Kingdom, it’s a timely reminder for us all to ensure we know who it is we’re communicating with online and not to share intimate photos and/or videos online.

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