Nebraska Officials Warning Parents About Internet Blackmailers

     The Nebraska State Patrol and the Attorney General’s Office are warning parents to be on the lookout for internet blackmailers fooling children into sending them sexually explicit photos and videos.

      In the scheme, known as “sextortion,” blackmailers pose as close-in-age peers or love interests on social media. After receiving images, they threaten to release them or show them to the victim’s parents unless they are paid. Sometimes they even threaten the safety of the youth’s family. 

      The AG’s Office and the State Patrol say it’s a serious crime, so they’re uring parents or guardians of child victims to report sextortion cases to the FBI office in Omaha or to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678. 

     They say the perpetrators, who pose as young boys or girls, approach children through social media before moving to more private messaging and video apps. 

     After establishing a “secret or special relationship,” they begin to the target to take sexually explicit images and videos, offering something of value for the images.