STA, 10 August 2020 - Three men from the Maribor area were arrested last week after blackmailing a man with recordings obtained illegally from his home security system, with the police advising the public to be cautious about the security settings of video systems in their homes. "You may find video footage from your home online pretty soon."
A week ago, the victim reported to the police that he had received a letter telling him that defamatory facts would be revealed unless he paid EUR 30,000, Maribor police spokesman Miran Šadl said.
A handover was agreed during which the police arrested a 21-year-old man. The investigators determined that he had been aided by a 22-year-old and a 24-year-old.
They did not acquire the footage from the video system directly but came across it online. The footage was acquired by a third party, who "posted it on a website with such content", the police said.
It warned video surveillance system owners to be cautious when installing such systems, above all they should set secure passwords.
Special caution is required for wireless cameras and systems connected to a network or such that upload footage to a cloud, with the police recommending that the latter be disabled for cameras in private homes.
The police said that the victim was not a public persona, nonetheless the video footage could have damaged his good name and reputation.
The threesome was apprehended and released after the prosecution said there was no grounds to hold them. They will, however, be charged with blackmail, which carries a prison sentence of between a year and seven years.
The 22-year-old was also found with banned sports performance enhancers and the M81 cannon cracker and may face a year to ten in prison for the former and between a year and five years for the latter.