CURRY COUNTY — The Curry County Sheriff's Office is warning people of a sex scam that results in victims being blackmailed over the Internet.
On Nov. 27, the Curry County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by a 17-year-old resident of Curry County reporting that he became a victim and was being blackmailed through the Internet. The victim reported that he was contacted through social media by a person identifying themselves through a fake profile and was now being blackmailed for explicit video/photos that he had sent to the scammer.
Doing some research, a Curry County deputy discovered the following: A scammer will "friend request" another person via Facebook and will commonly have one mutual friend. The scammer will have a short message conversation that leads to sexual conversations.
The scammer will then send a video request to the victim where the scammer is nude and requests the viewer to do the same. The scammer records the sexual video acts and sends the recording to the victim and threatens to publish the video/photos to the victim’s friends and family members that the scammer obtained via Facebook. The scammer offers a settlement of money in exchange for the video/photos to be deleted (most cases are between $1000-$5000)
Further research reveals that in many cases when the victim sends money, the scammer will continue to make threats to receive more money. In many cases, a fake profile is created by the scammer using the victim's name and profile picture. The scammer friend requests many of the victim’s family and friends and shares the explicit video and photos. The scammer also uploads the video via youtube.com. The scammer will continue to harass the victim with the video/pictures for weeks in many cases.
In this particular case it appears that this scam originated from out of the country and the scammer used a fake profile that shows they were from Albany, Oregon.
The Curry County Sheriff’s Office is urging everyone to be aware of this scam and not to fall prey to these scammers. Anyone who is currently being victimized or has been a victim of this scam should contact their local law enforcement agency.