A young couple from Vasai was allegedly blackmailed with their photographs by a man who demanded extortion money from them via Instagram. The victims, aged 20, approached Manickpur police in Vasai.
The accused, who had created a fake account on Instagram, had demanded Rs90,000 in bitcoins.
The accused had called one of the victims on his cellphone and claimed to have access to their photographs.
He threatened to upload the pictures on Instagram. He even threatened to share the pictures with the victims’ families.
The victims initially agreed to pay the accused Rs50,000 but later approached police for help.
Police said that they approached Instagram and found that the account was recently created and could be fake. Police suspect that someone known to the couple could have obtained their photographs and used it to blackmail them. Police have also not ruled out the possibility of the accused hacking the cellphones of the victims. A case under IPC section 384 (extortion) was registered against the suspect. Police said that they have obtained leads in the case and are likely to make an arrest.
Police urged people to not fall prey to blackmail and to report such cases to them instead.
Instagram has advised its followers to block persons, besides reporting it to police, when you receive any unwanted communication from them. “Abusive people often lose interest once they realize you will not respond,” it said.