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Men duped into sending explicit images/footage on Facebook

Men in the Bailiwick are being targeted by fraudsters running a blackmail scam on Facebook.

'We have received reports of at least three men who have been duped into sending either explicit images of themselves, or convinced to perform sexual acts via Skype while unaware that the female at the other end of the internet call was recording them,' High-Tech Crime Investigator Sarah Chandler said.

'Fake Facebook accounts are created using images of attractive women. Fraudsters then use the accounts to befriend men in a specific jurisdiction. The individuals involved in this scam will research the jurisdiction they are targeting in an attempt to pass off as a local resident.

'Once contact has been made with the male target, a conversation is instigated to try and make the potential victim at ease, believe they have met previously or interested in the female romantically.

'The fraudster will flirt with the man before asking if they would be willing to send intimate images to her. If this is declined they will suggest a Skype conversation, in which the female fraudster will offer to perform sexual acts on herself in exchange for the man doing the same.

'Once intimate images or footage have been captured by the fraudster, they will threaten to post them on YouTube or send to the victim's friends and loved ones unless a sum of money is paid.

'YouTube has clear terms and conditions prohibiting sexually explicit material and it has mechanisms in place to remove any such footage. However, the fraudsters have been creating mock YouTube pages with the videos attached, giving the victim the impression it has been posted. A headline is also often attached falsely accusing the man of performing the act in front of a juvenile.

'We are aware of instances where the blackmailers have distributed images to the victim's friends and family.

'None of the men who reported it to us handed over any money as a result of this scam.

'We continue to investigate these incidents in an attempt to identify where the fraudsters are based. However, as with all scams prevention is the best protection for the public.

'We would strongly warn members of the public, male or female, to be very cautious when accepting friend requests on Facebook from people they do not know. It is also clearly inadvisable to send intimate images of yourself, or partake in sexual activities via the internet, to anyone, regardless of how well you know them.'