There are a handful of sex scams floating around the web, and they tend to go through a predictable lifecycle. This means they spike in “popularity” with cybercriminals then go through a slow decay as authorities close in on certain cells. Or, media shines a light on whatever’s wreaking havoc lately.
But the thing is, they’re like a nest of cockroaches – nearly impossible to completely eliminate. They just shrink back into the shadows and tweak themselves. Then they come back to whatever new platforms, victim demographic, or updates that come around.
One of these is the Skype sex scam AKA the Facebook sex scam.
WHAT IS THE SKYPE SEX SCAM?
It always starts the same.
A guy finds a friend request from a woman – sorry dudes, this one targets you. It seems like nothing much at first, and can often be brushed off as someone you went to school with long ago or met at a big party, etc. The thing is … she’s really fucking hot.
The guy accepts the friend request and then it’s silent for a day or so.
Suddenly, he gets a message from her.
Now, here is where the story will vary depending on what country you’re from. The BBC did one interview where a man from Palestinian described his own nightmare with the Skype sex scam. The Lebanese “woman” on the other end was in her 20s, dead parents, a strict sister, no job, and very bored. And, as soon as he asked about hobbies she immediately answer with “sex.” She quickly weaved the idea that this bombshell loved to get naughty.
But no matter where the girl is from, there’s always something in the story that will justify every element of the chat/story.
- Always a reason to back up the “hobby” – either an oppressive culture, boring marriage, or straight up nypho.
- Always a reason to duck out of the conversation at any time – like a strict parent/sibling or a partner that could be home at any moment.
No matter what, the conversation will always go to the next phase.
The woman asks if the guy will turn on his webcam. The sexual spark is already lit and of course, he wants to see her too. She obliges, and she is just as hot in her video as in her profile pic. No doubt the guy already has a boner
However, there’s no speaking on her end because she “doesn’t want to get caught.” It’s not long until the conversation is “turning her on” and she wants to see the guy’s dick.
He quickly whips it out and asks to see her as well. The back-and-forth now brings her to the bed where she starts to masturbate. In the middle of the hot and heavy encounter, she asks to see his face because it’s also a turn-on. The scammer now has a video of the guy’s face as he’s masturbating.
The girl finishes, and no doubt the guy as well.
The chat continues a little longer, and she asks him what he does. All of a sudden, she has to log off – you know, the strict parent/sibling or partner.
Not long after the victim gets a new Skype or Facebook message revealing the scam. It was a guy on the other end all along and now he wants X-dollars or he’s going to release the video for the world to see. This includes whatever family, friends, or coworkers that would especially destroy the victim’s life if they found out.
WHAT DID THE BBC GUY DO?
The poor guy quickly deleted the Skype contact. But moments later, he got a WhatsApp message saying, “I’m here”, like an evil villain in a scary movie or something.
The price to stop the video from going live is a whopping 5000 euros.
The plea of “I can’t afford that! I was lying about my good job to impress the girl. I’m only a pizza delivery guy. I don’t matter at all” only gets the price bumped down to 2000.
Thankfully the BBC guy had a level head and took a moment to think about what would really happen – and had a lightbulb moment that is important for everyone to know.
Even if the video is sent to his contacts, the video will end up in junk mail because it will be from a sender they aren’t contacts with as well. Even if it did end up in the inbox, no person in their right mind would open an email and video link from an unknown sender. So, he rolled the dice.
“Post it. I don’t care.”
It’s a WhatsApp link to a YouTube video – the one of him masturbating. The Skype sex scam runner made good on his word. The BBC guy might have felt his world falling apart, but he tried to keep calm and just reported the video over and over again. Meanwhile, the scammer is getting pissed because the guy won’t pay. He throws insults and threats – like sending the video link to the mother.
Finally, YouTube takes down the video.
THE SKYPE SEX SCAM NETWORK
Even though these scams are running all over the world, oddly enough, a large number of cybercriminals are based in Oued Zem, Morocco. It’s one of the “sextortion” capitals of the world.
They go through Facebook with a fine-tooth comb, hunting down any potential mark.
But what about the girl in the video? Well, here’s where it gets really interesting/creepy.
The video is just cam girl footage from a porn site.
The scammers memorize the video so they know at which points the girl types, so they can message the guy on the other end. They get the guy to do all sorts of obscene things while making sure the clip has his junk and face in the same shot for a decent amount of time.
And if things weren’t crazy enough, they have it timed down to time-formula.
It’s 20 minutes on chat, 20 minutes for the video, and 20 minutes for uploading/blackmailing/threatening. And, 99% of the time, the victims pay.
According to one Oued Zem Skype sex scam runner, it all comes down to finding the “right weakness.” Some of their easiest marks are Arabs, married men, or religious guys. Even the guys that don’t look like they would fall for it are fair game and often end up in the prey pool.
The “business” is so booming that entry-level workers can make hundreds of dollars per day. The owners make so much that the entire town has been transformed to accommodate the new dump of wealth. There are countless money transfer offices, and the owners are well aware of where most of the money is coming from blackmail. People transform storefronts into sparse shops, trendy cafes, or whatever visage will help explain away why the family came into so much money and are driving around in luxury cars, etc.
Thankfully, our BBC guy realized that even if he paid, what was to stop the scammer from demanding more. Still, there are some men out there who pay out the nose.
This is just one of the many scams out there. But now, you’re armed with enough to help you spot this one a mile away!
Anything you want to add? Share in the comments!