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N.B. RCMP See Jump In Online Exploitation Targeting Youth

By Brad Perry Nov 15, 2022 | 6:08 AM

Mounties in New Brunswick have seen a “significant” increase in online exploitation targeting youth.

It prompted the national police force to issue a warning on Monday to both parents and teens.

Police said people are creating fake social media profiles on Snapchat and Instagram and using them to befriend teenage boys, who they convince to share intimate images and videos.

The scammers then blackmail the victims for money, gift cards and e-currency and threaten to share the images and video with family and friends if they do not pay.

Cpl. Hans Ouelette with the New Brunswick RCMP said it is important that victims do not pay any money. He said the individual should be blocked and reported as soon as possible.

“We understand that it may be difficult for youth to talk about these types of incidents, but it is important to notify police as soon as possible if you have been a victim of online extortion,” Ouellette said in a news release.

“Reporting these crimes can put an end to the blackmailing and can help us track down the individuals responsible.

Ouellette said parents should also talk to their children, especially if they are teens using Snapchat and other social media platforms.

Police said they believe the fraudulent profiles are being created by organized crime groups overseas, and are working with international law enforcement partners to further the investigation.

Anyone who has been a victim or has information that could help with the investigation is asked to contact their local police or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.


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