Derbyshire Police issue warning amid rise of ‘sextortion’ scams threatening to leak sensitive videos

Police have warned that reports of ‘sextortion’ scams in which offenders threaten to release sensitive images or videos have risen in Derbyshire.

Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 3:07 pm

Derbyshire Police have reported a notable increase in cases regarding threatening emails demanding a ransom be paid to prevent sensitive images or footage being circulated to the victim’s contacts.Sextortion scams are a type of phishing attack whereby people are coerced to pay a Bitcoin ransom because they have been threatened with sharing videos of themselves visiting adult websites.The email states that malware has been installed which takes control of your device camera and footage of the user has been captured. These scams are made to appear convincing because they provide seemingly plausible technical details about how this was achieved, and the ‘phish’ can often includes the individual’s password, address or telephone number.If you receive one of these emails, police are advising not to engage, and to report it by forwarding to [email protected], or visiting the Action Fraud website. People are also urged not to worry if the email includes your password or other details, as this has likely been obtained from historic breaches of personal data.Police are recommending that people check if their details have been compromised by visiting Have I Been Pwned. They also advise selecting ‘notify me’ so that if your email address is affected in future, this organisation will inform you so that you can change the password to any affected platforms.If the email includes a password you still use, change it immediately. Advice on how to create suitable passwords and enable other factors of authentication is available from Cyber Aware. If you have made the Bitcoin payment, you should report it to your local police force by calling 101. If you need emotional support, this is available from charities such as Victim Support by calling 0808 168 9111 or visiting their website.

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If you receive a sextortion email, you should report it immediately.