SINGAPORE--The number of extortion cases involving local men blackmailed over sexual acts recorded via Web-based cameras is increasing.
According to a statement released Wednesday by the Singapore Police Force (SPF), more than 50 cases of such attemps involving foreign female suspects were reported in 2012, compared to just 11 in 2011. In most cases, the men had been acquainted with women on social networking sites such as Tagged.com and Facebook, and then persuaded to perform sexual acts in front of a Webcam. Unbeknownst to them, the women had recorded these acts.
The women then blackmailed these men, threatening to circulate compromising photographs and video recordings of the victims if their demands for money were not met.
Local police urged Internet users to be wary of messages from strangers on the pretext of wanting to befriend them online, and to refrain from fulfilling any request that puts them in vulnerable positions such as performing compromising acts in front of a Webcam or giving personal details about themselves.
Symantec's Norton Cybercrime Report 2011 released last September found young male adults in Singapore who were active online were more likely to disregard Internet dangers. These men were more likely to communicate with strangers online, download malicious software, and "look at adult content", Effendy Ibrahim, Norton Internet Safety Advocate & Director, Asia, Norton by Symantec, told ZDNet Asia.