Interpol and cyber crime officials in the Philippines broke up an industrial-style extortion ring that as blackmailing hundreds of people around the world through online channels.
According to security agencies, the 58 people who were arrested in May 2014 would contact people through social media. After establishing a relationship, the group would obtain intimate or sexual pictures from the victim. Once in possession of the images, they would then demand payment or else the images would be released to the public.
Interpol stated that the average “sextortion” demand was between $500 to $15,000. Some victims paid on several occasions before going to the police.
Source: AFP, “Dozens held in Philippines over global ‘sextortion’ ring,” Global Post, May 2, 2014.