Sextortion — the act of threatening to share nude or explicit images — is more common than you may think, and cases affecting young children, teens and adults have increased exponentially in the past two years.

Not long ago, making prank calls was the worst trouble a group of teens could get into with a telephone. But today, predators use phones to stalk and blackmail teens on social media and dating apps.

Open lines of communication are the best defense against sextortion.  The embarrassment children feel from falling victim to these schemes often prevents them from coming forward to a parent, teacher, caregiver, or law enforcement; so, a single sextortion offender may have hundreds of undiscovered victims around the world.

We want to encourage parents and caregivers to have conversations with their children early on regarding their online activity.