• The Selah Way Foundation

Sextortion—A new online trend for solicitation

What is Sextortion? 

According to the FBI, Sextortion is a serious crime that occurs when someone threatens to distribute your private and sensitive material if you don’t provide them images of a sexual nature, sexual favors, or money.

Social media is being used as an informational jackpot providing predators with key information such as; interests, friends, school, family, etc.

The most vulnerable individuals at risk of this type of crime are child victims ranging from 8-17 years old.

It is essential that parents are teaching their children the importance of being aware of the dangers online, what behaviors to look out for, and the understanding that they could potentially come into contact with these dangerous individuals. 

Some key tactics predators use to coerce children are:

  • Offering the child something such as money, games, drugs, etc.

  • Using multiple identities to contact the child

  • Claiming to work for a modeling agency 

  • Posing ‘if, then’ statements. If you don’t do something, then there will be a consequence. 

  • Knowing an abundance of information about the child prior to establishing a relationship with them

Sextortion of minors is at an all-time high. To combat this the NCMEC launched a CyberTipline providing people the ability to report child sexual exploitation. Reports may be made 24-hours a day, 7 days a week online.

There are hundreds of other tactics predators use, however, educating your child on these examples could lead them to become more skeptical of strangers. 

Our organization recently launched a campaign, ‘Once Upon a Crime’, linked directly to sextortion and the large role it plays in human trafficking. Head over to our website to hear the stories of Alice, Ella and Alana. 

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