Webcam Cyber Crime — Help Against Blackmail and Bullying
Online Dating Scam
Looking for love online? My best advise: be careful. This is possible that also a very promising heart to heart connection can turn ugly. Of course, you may have luck and find love of your life there either. Apart from luck, being careful can safe your life, and this, not only on internet.
Because of the high demand for online intimacy, in recent years, dating sites on the internet went viral.
Keep in mind the possibility that criminals are able to use online dating sites for their purposes as well. They try to cheat people out of money, or even worse, an innocent interaction can become a blackmailed game with perhaps fatal consequences.
Our society is full of lonely people. Being alone, online at night, this allows the lonely mind to wander and wonder.
For someone who is alone, this webcam crime is more damaging than if they were surrounded by loving and supportive friends. Furthermore, very young people can be easily devastated by online dating scam.
Cyber Crime - Not in the News Anymore - Amanda Todd's too short Life
As an example, I'd like to recall the well known story of Amanda Todd, a girl from British Columbia.
She was still a child, twelve years old, and she "played" on the internet. There, she met someone who was “genuinely" interested in her. Of course she liked it.
She liked it even so much that she exposed herself for them in front of her webcam. In fact, she didn’t do it voluntarily. Moreover, she was persuaded to do so. She was much too young to imagine the high price she would pay for her innocent actions.
Her scammer, probably a pedophile, sent the images to her friends and teachers. This action caused bullying in her school and she was forced to change schools because of it. However, this wasn’t any help and any solution.
Later, he stalked and blackmailed her. He wanted more exposed pictures from her. She didn't cooperate. This is why he again, anonymously, published her topless pictures online.
She was devastated, felt very lonely, exposed, and she was ashamed of herself...
In September 2012, Amanda posted a video on YouTube. She was using flash cards to describe her problem. On the last card she wrote, “I have nobody. I need someone.”
It was a cry into emptiness, into a desert...
As she was asking for help nobody has helped her...
Amanda Todd wasn't able to cope with this situation...
Please don’t let it happen again! Learn more about this particular crime, prevent it, and support its victims.
We Love You Lizzy!
Cyber Bullying – This is about Bullying in its Most Extreme Form
A positive example of successful life after severe bullying attempts online is Lizzie Velasquez. She suffers from a very rare disease, only two people in the world are known to have similar syndrome. The illness is not allowing her to gain weight; she looks very thin, her weight has never excided 64 pounds, she is also blind on one eye.
As she was just seventeen, she was called online (YouTube), “the world’s ugliest woman” and many other even worse things. She wasn’t blackmailed in any way; however, the bullying she has experienced was deeply hurting. Not everyone would be able to cope with such extreme attacks on one’s public figure.
She decided not to take these attacks personally. What a wonderful way to cope with it! She decided to be happy! Yes! This is the right way.
In the meantime she inspires more and more people. She says, “…the syndrome is not a problem but a blessing…” In the recent years, she graduated from a college, has written three self-help books, and appeared few times on national TV programs in the US.
Don’t allow anybody to let you down online. Doesn’t matter what they declare, write, speak about you, this is their problem, not yours. Believe in yourself and your talents (yes, you have many talents!) and take an example from Lizzie Velasquez
How the Webcam Scam Works?
The victim meets someone on a dating website; it might be a beautiful woman or maybe a handsome man. They would soon ask the victim to video chat. After a short while, they would ask for “more”.
Some scammers will swear they fell instantly in love with their object of crime. They would use every trick to persuade them that they want to see them naked, to see their body and even sex.
During the conversation, after the victim has fulfilled their wishes, quite suddenly entire content of their talk will change radically. At that point, their “partner” on the other side of the connection, would attempt to blackmail their prey.
They would tell them that they’ve captured them exposed on video, they’ve got their all contacts, and that they are going to show them an “erotic” video of the victim.
It’s this moment that they would try to extort money from their victim. If the victim is not willing to pay them, they would indicate that all of the victim’s contacts will be able to recognize that the victim has committed a crime.
On such video, the face of the victim would be easily recognizable. The scammer will convince the victim that they were able to make a false accusation, for example, of pedophilia. In their falsified video, the victim would make an impression that he or she would appear in front of a child or a teenager.
The Merciless Blackmailer
The criminals use the victim’s vulnerability; they set the trap and try to operate on his or her sense of shame. They convince him or her not to go to the police.
The victim is often ashamed of his action, and he or she is afraid that the police might not believe him or her considering the pedophile background of this crime.
If the blackmailers were not successful in extracting the money, they would change their tactics. They may act as “police” and create fake documents. They may use a fraudulent website pretending to be an official internet site of local police.
They make the victim believe that, through payment of a FINE, the case would be closed! Such cruel and brutal action of the blackmailers may in some cases drive the victim to horrible thoughts about themselves and their life in general.
Those negatively affected by webcam crime, who have the strength of character not to pay the scammer a cent, are undoubtedly correct. Sadly, many of the wretched victims end up paying.
Blackmail attempts on the internet are committed every day. This most unfortunate state of affairs doesn’t necessarily result in any police action. The victims are actually ashamed of their activities online. Many victims are frustrated, knowing that the prosecution of such cyber-crime cases may lead to public humiliation as well as legal actions.
It’s an unfortunate fact that the internet allows the scammers a cloak of invisibility. The anonymity of the internet and large distances are on the side of scammers. Their victims may live in a country on the other side of the globe. This fact doesn’t make easier to prosecute such crimes at all.
The police, on the other hand, complains about victims who hide the true story. They are rarely comfortable in telling the truth. They would fabricate a story like, someone has hacked their computers, or estranged ex-girlfriend or boyfriend has put videos of them online.
Dangers in the Web Jungle — Help and Advice
- Don’t use your webcam, in a really intimate way, with someone you don’t know; or even better, never use it for the erotic exposition on the internet.
- Use your webcam only when your chatting “partner” is also using it and you actually can see what they’re doing. Keep in mind that it can be a pre-recorded video.
- Don’t provide any essential information online, especially not, if your chatting “partner” is asking you to go to a particular internet site that requires payment to use it.
- Never pay anything to a blackmailer!
- Always report internet fraud.
Online Help for Webcam Scam and Webcam Security
In the meantime we have some blackmail guidance, help, and anti bullying websites on the internet, see the following list:
1. Romancescams.org they offer lots of information and assistance.
2. An online reputation agency called Reputation Squad. They provide services like tracking criminals in web and victim’s protection.
3. Use this sites for online fraud reporting
- The National Fraud Information Centre this is an internet fraud complaint center
- CyberCops they fight internet fraud.
4. Scambusters.org there you’ll find many tips around webcam security, and a free subscription to ScamBusters, a public service and the #1 publication on internet fraud.
5. Stop bullying. Teens and Kids Help Free Phone - anonymous and confidential - in:
- Canada 1-800-668-6868 or the webpage;
- USA 1-888-5347-KIDS (5437) or the webpage;
- UK 0800 1111 or the webpage;
- Australia 1800-55-1800 or the webpage;
- India 10-9-8 or the webpage;
- How To Protect Your Kids From Cyberbullying: Kids.gov
Be careful by chatting online, use your common sense, don’t expect everywhere fraud but be alert and attentive. Wish you scam free dating, as well as, enjoyable and safe chatting.
When you have more information or help ideas about this topic, please write it in comments. Thank you.
Books about Cyber Bullying on Amazon
© 2012 Maria Janta-Cooper
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