A devastated father is warning of the "evil that's after our kids" after his teenage son killed himself when he was tricked into sending nude videos to Nigerian hackers online.
Brian Montgomery told how his 16-year-old son, Walker killed himself after the hackers – posing as an attractive young girl on Instagram – threatened to release the videos publicly unless he paid them off.
He said it was like his son had been targeted by a serial killer and is now warning of the dangers of "sextortion" scams.
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Brian, of Starkville, Mississippi, USA, told news outlet the Clarion Ledger that the day before he died, Walker was "perfectly happy."
Then on November 30, he was contacted by the hackers' fake profile on Instagram and hours later, Walker was found dead.
As soon as the scammers got what they wanted, they dropped the act and started demanding money for the explicit clips.
Walker spent the last few hours of his life begging for them not to be shared.
"The pressure Walker was under was unbearable to the point where he tells [the hackers] 'I'm going to commit suicide'… they respond with 'go ahead, you're already dead,' Brian told Fox News.
"I want people to understand the evil that is out there in the world and that's after our kids."
FBI agents traced the hackers' IP address to a location in Nigeria.
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"Sextortion begins when an adult contacts a minor over any online platform used to meet and communicate, such as a game, app, or social media account," the FBI said.
"In a scheme that has recently become more prevalent, the predator (posing as a young girl) uses deception and manipulation to convince a young male, usually 14 to 17 years old, to engage in explicit activity over video, which is then secretly recorded by the predator.
"The predator then reveals that they have made the recordings and attempts to extort the victim for money to prevent them from being posted online."
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Brian said: "Don't allow your children, by themselves, to use these phones without supervision because they're not capable of understanding the dangers that are on the other side of it.
"As a parent that's something I'm going to have to live with as a regret because Walker obviously had access to his telephone in his room by himself."
For emotional support, you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.
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