“WARNING” – Beware of Online Companies Preying on Victim Desperation When It Comes To Sextortion!

May 13, 2024

This weekend, we provided support to a teenage boy (our 317th case) and his family, who were victims of a devastating sextortion scam (1). The teen was in a state of extreme distress and hyper-vigilance, feeling desperate and willing to take any measures, and pay any price, to put an end to the extortion and recover the intimate images he had shared.

During our discussions with this teen, we learned that out of desperation, he had found a company online that he reached out to, where for a significant monetary fee they could help the teen to “fightback and keep explicit intimate images off the internet” We advised this teen to immediately stop all communications with this company, and NOT pay them any money for their assistance!

When we inquired about the company’s name, the teenager shared it with us (though we will not disclose it in this article). We decided to investigate further by visiting their website, which appeared professional and modern. However, as we delved deeper, we noticed a familiar feel to the content and images on this site. Our suspicions were confirmed when we discovered three additional websites with similar designs, text, and graphics, despite having different company names, URLs, contact information, email addresses, and phone numbers. It became clear that all four websites were owned by the same entity. Our investigation led us to their headquarters, located at a specific address in the United States.

We have now provided free support to 317 teenagers and their families who have been victims of sextortion. Unfortunately, some of these families were misled by online companies claiming to offer solutions to stop the extortion and recover intimate images that were sent. One family we worked with paid over $1,000, only to discover that in the end the company was unable to provide any assistance whatsoever.

Here in Canada, the only people who can help are the police, and the Canadian Center For Child Protection through “Project Arachnid” which is FREE. (2) Here in British Columbia, we also have the new Intimate Image Protection Service which is hosted by the BC Attorney General’s Ministry which is also FREE (3) In the United States, the National Center Doe Missing and Exploited Children have a FREE program called “Take It Down” (4)

Regrettably, the surge in teen sextortion has led to a proliferation of websites and companies popping up online claiming to offer solutions, many of which are likely operated by the same entity. These sites prey on the vulnerability of desperate teenagers, promising assistance but delivering little to no help. While they may appear to be a lifeline to those in crisis, they are, in reality, predatory and exploitative, capitalizing on a teenager’s desperation to escape the situation, and profiting from their distress.

The devastating impact of sextortion on teenagers and their families cannot be overstated. As we have seen in the case of the 317th teen we supported, the desperation to escape this situation can lead to further exploitation by what we believe to be predatory companies. It is crucial to remember that the only trustworthy sources of help are law enforcement, the Canadian Center for Child Protection, and specialized services like Project Arachnid, the Intimate Image Protection Service, and Take It Down, which offer FREE and effective support. We must be vigilant in exposing and rejecting false promises of assistance and work together to create a safe and supportive environment for our youth.

Please share this article with everyone you know who has a teen

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