Australian Federal Police are investigating hundreds of sexual extortion cases involving teenage boys.
Police are receiving more than 100 reports every month of teenage boys being extorted for money after sending naked pictures of themselves to offenders posing online as teenage girls.
But police worry the real number of victims in Australia is much higher since it was believed less than a quarter of teenagers reported incidents to authorities.
The AFP said this week it had closed down more than 500 bank financial services and accounts linked to the extortion attempts run by global crime syndicates.
They said criminals were posing online as young people and coercing teenagers, particularly boys, into sending naked pictures of themselves. They would then blackmail the boys into sending money.
AFP Commander Hilda Sirec said more than 90 per cent of victims were males aged 15 to 17 years.
"We are experiencing a global trend of offshore crime syndicates targeting teenagers, predominantly young men and boys, being coerced into sending sexually explicit content and then blackmailing them," she said.