If you are reading this it’s safe to say that you might have fallen victim to sextortion or know someone who has. Do not worry, the fact that you are doing some research to find help is a great first step! Sextortion has taken hold of the internet and people are finding themselves falling for this cyber scam every day. You are not alone in this and there are resources to help get you out of this nightmare. In this blog, we will speak on what to do if you are being sextorted on Snapchat and How To Stop Blackmail on Snapchat.
Table of Contents:
What is Snapchat Blackmail?
Snapchat blackmail is when someone you may or may not know is holding your explicit images or videos hostage and threatening to expose them online until you give them what they want, which can be money, sexual favors, or important information they need. In this case, this type of blackmail can also be labeled sextortion. Internet sextortion has been on the rise among dozens of popular social media platforms such as Snapchat. So how exactly did this happen?
Sextortionists have a very successful strategy when it comes to luring victims. They start with creating dozens of catfish profiles and reach out to as many people as they can to entice them into sharing explicit content. Some of these criminals take it as far as pretending to be in a real relationship with their victims, also known as romance scams. Either way, the point of doing this is to threaten to expose their victim’s content to receive crazy amounts of money until they wring their victims dry. We will get into what you can do to prevent this from happening to you.
How to Prevent Snapchat Blackmail
The reason these blackmailers have gotten away with this cyber-crime is that they are good at what they do! So, what can you look out for when you are using the app?
Firstly, you need to remember that these criminals are using catfish profiles so you have no clue who could be behind that new account that just added you as a friend. This should be something you pay close attention to. It’s common for users to add people they do not personally know, but caution is important. Try to befriend users you know for certain and be warier about who you accept as a friend.
If you do accept a random request from a stranger, pay close attention to their profile. The majority of sextortionists create new accounts to blackmail victims, so if you notice their account has not been active long or was created recently you should be alarmed.
The most telling of signs is the way these criminals communicate. It is very telling to have a random account add you on Snapchat and start to ask personal questions about yourself, then lead the conversation down a sexual path. If you receive a message like that you should know this person has other intentions than just meeting new people and becoming your friend.
Lastly, and I think this is the most obvious form of advice but do not ever for any reason send any explicit content to a stranger online. It is understandable to get caught up in the moment but you should also be thinking about how you do not know who this person is and what their intentions might be.
What To Do If You Are Being Blackmailed on Snapchat
If you have fallen into temptation and sent an explicit video or image do not panic. The act of sextortion and the criminals who act on it can be terrifying but there is help out there and ways you can keep yourself safe. If you are being blackmailed on Snapchat follow these tips.
Document the entire conversation so you have proof of the blackmail. The majority if not all sextortionists will try to smear your name online and make false allegations about you that can be life damaging. Having proof that you are the victim will play as a safety measure.
Keep strong privacy settings on your account, as well as any other social media platform you use other than Snapchat. There are features on Snapchat that can benefit your blackmailer and we want to avoid giving them more power at all costs. Change the following:
- Disable your location
- Turn off “see me in quick add”
- Change who can contact you to “my friends”
- Change view of my story to “my friends”
- Set up two-factor authentication to better secure your account
Stay calm, and do not pay your blackmailer! This will just escalate things and give your blackmailer the proof that their scare tactics are working and that you have money to send them. They will always come back asking for more and more money.
Report the crime to law enforcement, the FBI, and blackmail specialists. You do not have to handle this alone and you really shouldn’t. These cybercriminals have a way of working that victims are not aware of. Reaching out to authorities and specialists will help alleviate the burden and help bring an end to the harassment.
We cannot stress enough how important it is to be aware of who you are talking to online. Predators and cyberbullies can be anyone, and they often go undetected. Remember to never share explicit content with strangers and report any blackmail attempts immediately. If you ever feel unsafe or uncomfortable online, reach out for help. The internet should be a safe space for everyone, and we can work together to make sure it remains that way. Report Online Sextortion To Sextortion Helpline 24\7