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IC3 Warns of Criminals Using Mug Shots to Extort Victims

The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) has received hundreds of complaints from individuals claiming to have found their purported mug shots posted on various websites. When victims requested that the photos be removed from the sites, they were extorted.

Jun 19, 2013 04:00 PM

IC3 Warns of Criminals Using Mug Shots to Extort Victims

IC3 Logo (Large)The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) has received hundreds of complaints from individuals claiming to have found their mug shots posted on various websites. Some of these individuals have stated they were juveniles at the time of their arrests and their records were sealed—and therefore not available to the public. Others have said that the information posted was either incorrect or blatantly false.

When victims requested that the photos be removed from the sites, they were asked to provide copies of their driver’s licenses, court records, and other personal identifying information—putting them at risk for identity theft. They were also told they had to pay a fee...but even then, some pictures were not removed—or if they were taken off one site, they were then posted to a similar site. If victims threatened to report the websites for unlawful practice, the websites’ owners threatened to escalate the damaging information against the victims. If you’ve had a similar experience, please file a complaint at www.ic3.gov.

More details on this and other recent cyber crime trends and scams