Letters & Opinion

Catfishing on IG

Dear Editor,

I was recently made aware of certain activities involving young Saint Lucian individuals over Instagram and I could not sit back and wait. As we are all aware, ‘catfishing’ has become a big deal in our technological era; persons have taken this to the extreme with sexual exploitation. It is reported that many Saint Lucian females have fallen victim to catfish accounts where explicit photographs and videos were threatened to be exposed, if they did not comply with the demands.

It is unclear as to how some of this content was shared, however, in some cases it may have been voluntary out of trust, but in others it may be safe to assume that the ‘catfish’ may have hacking experience. One of the 10 cases that I am aware of have been reported to the authorities, but nothing has been done. Some of these blackmail activities have been going on for years. There are two accounts that have been identified as the attackers; whenever they are reported and removed by Instagram, they create new accounts and restart their attacks.

Some of these victims had their explicit content shared with all their followers or uploaded to pornographic sites. This is illegal and not right. I believe that our society needs to be made aware of these specific incidents so we can be our neighbours’ keeper for a better future.

If you could use your platform to spread awareness, this would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Thomas Eugene

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