Sextortion: what is it?

On Behalf of | Feb 14, 2017 | Sex Crimes

Teenagers, college kids, and other young adults often engage in risky behavior. It is normal for kids to push the boundaries and experiment, an inevitable byproduct of growing up. Unfortunately, with camera phones and the Internet, some of these mistakes can follow them around for the rest of their lives. This post will go over how hackers are using nude photos to extort people.

Taking a nude picture and keeping it on your phone or computer seems innocent enough. However, that computer or phone could get hacked and those photos used to extort people. A new breed of hacker is rising, people who hack into computers and extort victims through the threat of publishing nude photographs and videos.

The FBI is using the story of Ashley Reynolds to warn the public about the dangers of the Internet. Ms. Reynolds was 14 at the time she was contacted by a person claiming to be a teenage boy. The extorter, Lucas Michael Chansler a 26-year old hacker, claimed that he had nude photographs of her and threatened to release them. He forced Ms. Reynolds to send him more and more topless and other nude photos.

This crime, colloquially known as sextortion, resulted in a 105-year sentence for Mr. Chansler. Ms. Reynolds parents alerted the police who eventually arrested him. Upon his arrest, the police recovered images that related to more than 350 victims. The FBI continue to warn parents and teenagers to use the Internet wisely, always know who you are speaking to and never send nude photos to anyone. Underage sexting could result in a criminal charge.

If you are facing a sex crime charge, you may want to contact a lawyer. As you can see, the police and FBI are taking sex crimes more seriously, especially since the sharp increase in teenage victims. An attorney can help ensure that your case is treated fairly and not caught up in the fervor to punish anyone for anything.

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