Cyber-Extortionist Threatens Australian Swimming Pro
An Australian swimming star has been targeted by a vicious blackmail attempt undertaken via social media.
Malicious messages were sent to Commonwealth Games gold medalist Shayna Jack over the weekend by an unidentified cyber-criminal via Facebook. The miscreant threatened to post pictures of Jack unless they received a ransom payment.
In a creepy message designed to scare the swimmer, the threat actor told Jack: “I can see what you’re doing at all times.”
At first, Jack ignored the threat, but the 21-year-old contacted Queensland police after receiving more messages along with a sinister warning that something “disturbing” would be posted on her Facebook page if she didn’t respond.
“If you don’t pay – you will regret this,” wrote the anonymous attacker.
Jack received further threats demanding that she pay up at around 9.40pm on Monday night. On Tuesday morning, the sportswoman awoke to find a malicious message posted on her Facebook account by her cyber-attacker.
Whoever authored the post had timed the execution of their threat to do the most damage to Jack’s professional swimming career. The water star is currently appealing against a 4-year ban she received after testing positive for the performance-enhancing drug Ligandrol.
Jack was tested for the drug ahead of the 2019 World Swimming Championships held in South Korea.
Hoping to exploit Jack’s predicament, the attacker posted a message purporting to be from her which read: “I regret that I used doping at the 2017 Olympics.”
Fortunately, since no Olympic Games were held in 2017, the cyber-criminals made it easy to for Facebook users to spot their lie.
Jack’s lawyer Tim Fuller said the extortion attempt had left the swimmer feeling “shaken.”
Fuller branded the actions of the threat actor as “disgusting” and added that it could have had a major impact on the result of the swimmer’s appeal.
A date was set for Jack’s appeal hearing earlier this month by the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Throughout her ordeal, the swimmer has protested her innocence and maintained that she has never knowingly ingested Ligandrol.
The drug is a banned muscle-builder that was designed to treat muscle wasting diseases and osteoporosis.