Blackmail is a form of coercion in which an individual or group is threatened with having material about them, whether genuine or false, released or disseminated unless certain demands are met. Usually, damaging information is only disclosed to close friends or family members and not to the wider public. Threatening the victim or a loved one with bodily, psychological, or emotional harm in addition to facing criminal charges are possible examples.

Usually, it is done for one’s own gain, which usually takes the shape of money, property, or power. Living without the internet doesn’t seem to be an option anymore. Whether it’s accessing our messages, sharing reports through online media, reading the news, purchasing goods, or just using WhatsApp, our daily activities would not be possible without the internet. There is a significant risk of sensitive data being lost due to the numerous exchanges and massive volume of information that is often transferred. Web-based media is arguably the most well-known platform where online fraud occurs due to misuse of personal information. While monsters of web-based media have been managing to protect their base.

Individuals are regularly used as a form of blackmail by manipulating photos so that their looks appear sexual. Cyberstalking is often coupled with sextortion and revenge pornography. Dating websites and social networking networks are major contributors to this rise in crimes. Since users of video-calling apps are unaware that they are being videotaped, smartphone applications increase the risk. Applications that can record WhatsApp audio and video chats, programmes that can access all the content in a user’s phone gallery (including social network, gaming, and photo-editing apps), and methods for retrieving data from formatted phones are all available for download. Lack of knowledge about these phone apps and tech-based features is one of the most frequent causes of victimisation.

Report: If someone is blackmailing you

Reporting the criminal and filing a formal complaint (FIR) with the local police station is the first action you may take. You can register an online blackmail complaint with the closest police station and report any instances of blackmail that you have come across in the internet or social media platforms.

The National Cyber Crime Portal archives and classifies online blackmail complaints into two categories: cybercrimes against women and children and other cybercrimes.
The most efficient way to report cybercrime (blackmail) is to contact the Cybercrime Unit. It is still possible to register a formal complaint about it even if you are unable to pay the costs or lack the necessary documentation. 

How to report Cyber Blackmailing

If you have been a victim of cyber blackmail, you should first consult a cyber-crime lawyer. They will help you understand your legal rights and options and guide you in filing a police report.

In India, the following procedures must to be observed when reporting cyber-extortion:
1. Obtaining as much information as you can regarding the cyber-extortion is the first step.

2. Screenshots of the offender’s emails or texts, incident logs, and other pertinent data might be included in this.  

3. Notifying the government and police about cyber blackmail is the next step. You can register a complaint via the internet or in person at the closest police station. Ensure the cops have access to all the evidence you have collected.

4. Getting legal counsel from a cybercrime attorney is crucial these days. They will assist you understand your rights and options and will guide you through the legal procedure.

5. You should assist with the investigation if you have reported cyber-extortion to the police or other authorities. Please provide the investigator with all relevant information and documents and follow their instructions.  

6. Maintaining continuous touch with the authorities is crucial in order to monitor the investigation’s progress. For updates, get in touch with the cybercrime attorney or investigating officer. 


The system must have a formal, confidential method for receiving and registering complaints, guaranteeing that the incident is examined with promised privacy, and allow everyone to report cybercrime in a respectful and secure manner. More significantly, victims need legal and psychological help to come forward and hold abusers accountable, as well as institutional (sexual harassment committees at colleges and schools) and community protection mechanisms (NGOs). Rather than marginalising the victims, society has to be aware of them and embrace them. People who are affected by this need to take a brave stand and speak up. They ought to be conscious of their rights and refuse to allow the abuser to profit from their quiet.

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