'Sextortion' is a horrible scam going around that will make you think twice about your social media 1 year ago

'Sextortion' is a horrible scam going around that will make you think twice about your social media

"[It] is happening all the time."

Social media makes it easy for a Catfish or any person that you don't know to send you a friend request and start a romantic or intimate relationship online.

However, cybersecurity experts are warning the public about the danger of sending explicit images online, especially to strangers.

After the Wanna Cry ransomware incident - which was a massive computer virus that was so strong it damaged a good chunk of NHS files in England - rocked online security throughout the world, many Irish companies increased their IT security in the hope that if and when the attack took place, they would be able to cope with the hacking.

However, 'sextortion' isn't as high-tech or as complicated as a normal online virus or scam.

According to the Evening Echo, CEO of Cyber Risk International, Paul Dwyer, who will be speaking at today's Cyber Threat Summit in Dublin, says people need to be aware of the scam.

"People hear time and time again about the fact that there are fake profiles that reach out to people," he says.

"They start a relationship with them and then they will ask them to do an embarrassing act on camera, then hold them to ransom.

"That is happening all the time, we are getting regular calls, and not just us but other security providers too."

Gardaí state that if you are a victim of 'sextortion', you should follow these five steps:

  • Don’t share more, don’t pay anything.
  • Look for help. You are not alone.
  • Preserve evidence. Don’t delete anything.
  • Stop the communication. Block the person.
  • Report it to the police.