UK crime agency alerts teachers on ‘sextortion’ after rise in cases

UK crime agency alerts teachers on ‘sextortion’ after rise in cases
UK crime agency alerts teachers on ‘sextortion’ after rise in cases

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - Britain’s National Crime Agency said there had been a global rise in ‘sextortion’ cases — in which people are threatened with the release of compromising photos, either real or faked, if they do not pay to stop them. — Picture by Hari Anggara

LONDON, April 29 — Britain’s National Crime Agency (NCA) said today it had issued an unprecedented alert to hundreds of thousands of education professionals over an increase in cases of financially motivated sexual extortion, including in schools.

The NCA said there had been a global rise in “sextortion” cases — in which people are threatened with the release of compromising photos, either real or faked, if they do not pay to stop them.

While all age groups are at risk, a large proportion of cases involved teenage boys, the NCA said, leading it to give advice to teachers about how to spot the signs of the abuse.

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“Sextortion is a callous crime. Perpetrators have no concern for victims or the lives that might be destroyed in the process. Their sole motivation is financial gain,” James Babbage, director general for threats at the NCA, said in a statement.

“We are asking education professionals to help us raise awareness about this crime type, which is sadly increasing across the world.”

A lawmaker from Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Conservative Party left the party this month after he admitted divulging the personal phone numbers of his colleagues to someone he met on a dating app.

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William Wragg said he had felt compromised after he sent the unknown person intimate photos of himself, prompting warnings for lawmakers to be careful about their online interactions. — Reuters

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