NCMEC: Instagram, Snapchat Lead in Child Sextortion Cases, Boys Now More Vulnerable

According to a report by National Center of Missing and Exploited Children(NCMEC), there has been an 82% increase in the financial sextortion of children between 2021 and 2022. These kinds of incidents have been seen for many years now where scammers ask kids for their compromising pictures and blackmail them with the pictures in exchange for money. NCMEC receives about 812 reports of this kind of blackmailing weekly on average and most of the blackmailers ask for money.

NCMEC says that about 3.5 to 5% of the children have gone through financial sextortion before reaching adulthood. Girls get impacted from this more than boys but now NCMEC is getting reports of boys between the ages of 14 and 17 being more impacted with financial sextoration than girls.

Most of this crime is being done on Instagram where scammers lure innocent children into sending their compromised pictures. Snapchat is the second closest culprit. 75% of the times scammers send the messages first on these two social media apps while Facebook is in the third position with 7% reports.

65% of the victims are asked to move to a private chat from a public chat to make the victim vulnerable enough to share their data. The scammers then blackmail them with the pictures and ask them to transfer money on different payment apps like Venmo, CashApp and PayPal. NCMEC says that social media should improve their reporting methods so the arrest of these scammers can be possible.

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