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Reports of sextortion also in Lloydminster

Lloydminster RCMP are noting reports of teens being threatened by someone online to have nude images of themselves made public if they don’t send money.

Public information officer, Cst. Kelsey Davidge notes the increase across Canada of sextortion and says there are reports among local teens.

“Coming from the community and school resource position, we have I would say on a weekly basis have some reporting either through the school itself, or coming into the detachment of this type of scam affecting youths across the city. We have seen a large increase in all genders being affected, but between the ages of 13-16.”

Davidge says victims were approached online by someone identifying as female in that age group via apps that appeal to teens. Victims are asked for their username on platforms like Instagram and they send nude photos of themselves which are then used as leverage to demand payments of about $500.

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Davidge counsels that victims will not be in trouble for going to the police. Also, victims are not alone and they are not to blame.

RCMP are advising:

  • Never answer requests from people that you don’t know
  • Don’t send nude images of yourself
  • Always answer calls with the camera turned off until you can prove the identity of the person who is calling
  • If you are a victim, report it to local police or visit cybertip.ca
  • Stop all communication with the suspect
  • Do not comply or send money, gift cards, etc.
  • Keep all correspondence to bring in to the police

“Things happen in life and there are always ways we can help you and make sure that harassment stops,” says Davidge. “There are lots of resources across our community that we can set up victims with. Whether it be within the school system, external services or even Victims’ Services in our detachment.”

Davidge cites the availability of social media to kids, and with more people having access, so too, the increase in reports across Canada dating back to 2014.

In the 2022-2023 fiscal year, the Saskatchewan RCMP’s Internet Child Exploitation unit responded to 931 cases, in 2023-2024 that number is expected to surpass 1,000.

According to the ALERT website, studies show that one in three victims of sextortion don’t tell anyone, due to embarrassment or shame.

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