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Dennis Hardin

Sextortion

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I thought perhaps OL members might be interested in knowing more about a relatively new cybercrime—sextortion--and its criminal consequences.

Extortion and blackmail have been around for centuries--but now, they've gone online. Once, a would-be blackmailer or extortionist would have to physically trail and spy on his or her victim, risking being spotted. Now, however, all that is necessary is a computer, and an online identity can hide the perpetrator's true identity.

Today, a blackmail or extortion plan may begin with a hacker's getting into an Internet user's pc and searching for embarrassing nude photos or messages. If a hacker takes control of a computer, he may be able to control the webcam and microphone. Thus, he can peer into the computer user's bedroom, hear his target's conversations, and know every keystroke she makes online. In addition to being a remote voyeur, the hacker may also become an extortionist -- threatening to reveal embarrassing secrets to a romantic partner or, in the case of a teenager, a parent, unless money is provided or additional intimate photos or videos are shared.

Or, such a scheme may begin with a seemingly innocuous online "friend" request, or a comment by a chat room buddy. Such a request or comment may lead to flirtation, which then results in the victim's transmitting compromising photos to the online "friend." Once those photos have been turned over, the "friend" has leverage to get more compromising photos, and/or to demand money to keep the photos secret.

Such schemes are common enough that they now have a name: Getting sensitive personal and sexual information from an Internet user and using it against that person is referred to as "sextortion."

Here’s a link to an interesting case involving a man recently sentenced to six years in prison:

Orange County Man Sentenced to Six Years in Prison for Hacking

And, for anyone who has been a victim of such crime, here’s a link to the FBI’s internet crime complaint center:

Federal Bureau of Investigation website

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More information about "sextortion" cases in the US and Canada:

Grand Sudbury Police Department website

Police agencies in Canada and the United States have charged and successfully convicted hackers for extortion in cases similar to the one described above.

The Greater Sudbury Police Service's Cyber Crime Unit (in Ontario, Canada) has received similar complaints and is actively involved in a number of investigations.

The fact that the perpetrator is outside the United States is no reason not to report the threat to the FBI. Here is a case in which Canadian police arrested a man on a tip from the FBI:

Ontario Man Arrested in "International Sextortion" Case

If you happen to be a hacker, you may want to start greasing up your little bunghole, because Bubba is gonna be happy to meet you. (Especially if you're the type who tends to cry a lot while getting fucked up the arse.)

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If you happen to be a hacker, you may want to start greasing up your little bunghole, because Bubba is gonna be happy to meet you. (Especially if you're the type who tends to cry a lot while getting fucked up the arse.)

Jeez, it’s starting to sound like you approve of prison rape!

I detect a subtext here, but I can’t quite integrate the connections. Maybe I’ll be able to tap into it later.

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Prison rape is obviously a horror story for its victims. The fact that it remains a reality of prison life is a moral outrage. Those prison administrators who allow it to continue without doing everything possible to stop it are utterly reprehensible.

On the other hand, there are those potential victims for whom I am unlikely to have a shred of pity, any more than I would feel a moment’s sadness for a serial killer who died in a car accident. If a scumwad like Jeffrey Dahmer were gang-raped a dozen or more times a day, I would not lift a finger to stop it. I cannot conceive of any form of punishment that could be described as excessive for a Ted Bundy or an Ed Gein.

I am tempted to say the same thing, incidentally, about a serial child abuser. As a victim of childhood sexual abuse myself, I can testify to the inestimable, long-term damage it does to your life. I am still dealing with its consequences today, and feel quite certain that I will continue to do so for the rest of my life. I would not feel sympathetic for a child abuser who was taught what it feels like to be the victim. I will readily acknowledge that this is probably just an emotional reaction on my part, however.

My statement about the rape of an imprisoned hacker was simply an acknowledgment of fact. Without dancing around the issue, let me just say that It reflects my unqualified hatred for such individuals and the damage they do to their victims. As human beings, they are lower than the muck I scrape off the bottom of my shoes. At the same time, I would obviously not defend the rape of such individuals as just.

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Dennis,

It took a lot of courage to open up like that on a forum where there are some people who are not very Hardin-friendly. I want you to know I see the courage and admire you for it.

There's something else. In NA meetings, I witnessed one person after another talk about sexual abuse he and she suffered as a child. (I never had a reason like that for my addictions. I was more shameless. I just liked getting high. Then the monster grew. :) )

So at least you didn't compound your lot in life with drug addiction or alcoholism (as far as I know). From the things I heard in NA, that shows you have a lot more on the ball than meets the eye.

Michael

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While a case might be made--not by me--that sex between an adult and child doesn't have to hurt the child depending on innumerable variables, no one knows who that child is in respect to what so it's simply not to be done, period.

--Brant

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