Blackmail and Sextortion
Who Can Engage in Blackmail and Extortion?
Sadly, blackmail and sextortion are not generally engaged in by strangers. Often, a former spouse or significant other threatens to share a naked photograph or video online unless the victim gives them something in exchange. Unfortunately, this exchange usually comes at a high price and can be physical, financial, or emotional in nature. An ex boyfriend or ex girlfriend may force you to stay in a relationship while trying to scare you by saying they will send your images to your mom, dad, employer, or sibling. At Daniel Szalkiewicz and Associates, P.C., we have dealt with it all.
What is Blackmail and Sextortion?
An anonymous blogger’s online identity can be tracked through several channels:
First, a user’s cookies provide relevant information. Cookies are small pieces of data sent from a website that then are stored on an individual’s computer after the individual visits the website. Unfortunately for most victims, a person is not able to access an anonymous poster’s cookies on their own. In order to obtain the cookies, a victim must first have access to the anonymous poster’s computer. This usually happens during the discovery stage of a lawsuit, when you already know who the anonymous poster is.
Blackmail and extortion are defined as the “criminal offense of unlawfully obtaining money, property, or services from a person, entity, or institution, through coercion.”
Because of the rise of the internet, a new type of blackmail and extortion has arisen – sextortion. According to the FBI, “Sextortion is a criminal act that occurs when someone demands something of value, typically images of a sexual nature, sexual favors, or money, from a person by either:
- Threatening to release or distribute material the victim seeks to keep private. This material often includes sexually explicit images, videos, e-mail, and text messages.
- Threatening to financially harm friends or relatives of the victim by using information obtained from the victim’s computer unless they comply with demands.
- Withholding something the victim needs or wants unless they comply with demands. This is usually perpetrated by someone in a position of power or authority, such as a representative of the government, educator, or employer.
Don't Let Someone Threaten You
What to do if Someone is Threatening You with Blackmail and Sextortion?
Your privacy is important. We will help you speak with the proper authorities, send cease and desist letters, and work our hardest to protect you. We take threats by cowards personally and will do whatever we can to try to make sure your private images are not disclosed.