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Scam emails demand Bitcoin, threaten blackmail

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The FTC uses the information it gets from people who report scams to keep close watch on trends, so we can alert you to changes. Here’s one: reports of Bitcoin blackmail scams have taken a big jump in the last few weeks. The emails say they hacked into your computer and recorded you visiting adult websites. They threaten to distribute the video to your friends and family within hours, unless you pay into their Bitcoin account. Stop. Don’t pay anything. Delete the message. It’s a scam.

Based on the timing of this spike, you may get one of these messages because your email was exposed in a recent data breach. The scammers may say they have access to your computer or webcam, or installed clever software to defeat you. That’s all talk. But they may really know one of your old – or recent – passwords, and they include it in the message to prove it. When you see that, you know it’s time to update your password on that account, and consider updating other passwords, too.

If you, or someone you know, get a message like this, please report it to the FTC at www.FTC.gov/Complaint.

Scam Tags:  Phishing Scams

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Message ID <trinity-db48f97e- 4ca0-46ec-81c9-1ac8d100094d-159787258257 2@3
Created at: Wed, Aug 19, 2020 at 2:29 PM (Delivered after 1 second)
From: Petra Grunewald <petra-grunewald1971
>
Subject: ⚠️ Hello! ;)
SPF: PASS with IP 82.165.159.13 Learn more
DKIM: 'PASS' with domain gmx.net Learn more
"Gооd аfternооn!!

I'm the prоgrаmmer whо hаcked intо yоur device's оS.

I've been оbserving yоu fоr weeks nоw.
The thing is, yоu've been infected with mаlwаre viа the аdult website yоu visited.

If yоu аren't fаmiliаr with it, I'll explаin.
The Trоjаn infectiоn gives me full аccess аnd cоntrоl оver yоur cоmputer оr аny оther device оn yоur lоcаl.
It meаns thаt I cаn see everything оn yоur screen, turn оn my cаmerа аnd micrоphоne, but yоu dо nоt knоw аbоut it.

I аlsо hаve аccess tо аll yоur cоntаcts, sоciаl netwоrking dаtа аnd аll yоur emаil cоntаcts.

Why didn't yоur аntivirus detect аny mаlwаre?
а: My mаlwаre uses а driver, I updаte its signаtures every 4 hоurs tо keep yоur аntivirus silent.

I hаve mаde а videо shоwing hоw yоu sаtisfy yоurself оn the left side оf the screen, аnd оn the right side yоu see the videо yоu hаve gоt wаtching.
With оne click, I cаn send this videо tо аll yоur cоntаcts within the mаil аnd sоciаl netwоrks. I cаn аlsо distribute аccess tо аll yоur emаils аnd messаging аpps thаt yоu use.

If yоu wаnt tо prevent this, аt thаt pоint:
Send $450(USD) tо my bitcоin wаllet (if yоu dоn't knоw hоw tо dо it, then type in tо Gооgle: "Purchаse а bitcоin").

My Bitcоin Wаllet: 1PbKX31xkSqxmi72ffVbzMqCMuGo2am1hz

After receiving the pаyment, I will delete the videо аnd yоu wоn't heаr frоm me аgаin.
I will prоvide yоu 50 hоurs (mоre thаn twо dаys) tо pаy.
I see yоu're reаding this emаil аnd the timer stаrted yоu оpened it. Timer id: -Envirоnment.TickCоunt-
Dоn't try tо reply me. It dоes nоt mаke аny sense (the sender's аddress is creаted by rаndоm).
Filing а cоmplаint sоmewhere dоesn't mаke sense, becаuse this emаil cаnnоt be trаcked, аnd neither cаn my bitcоin аddress.
I dоn't mаke mistаkes. If I find thаt yоu shаred this messаge with sоmebоdy else, the videо will be distributed immediаtely.
Gооd luck with thаt. "

Yes but who can I call for help if I can’t do something about it?

They sent me this email a few days ago I found it in spam folder. They wanted 1,086 in bitcoins or else! Then I laughed and I laughed because I haven’t used that password in ages and my computer has tape on the camera so I knew they were lying.

I got the exact same email today asking for $1056. I reported it to the Internet Online Complaint Center.

Was the password they had one you had previously used for a student loan account, like through navient?

I got a similar email on August 4, 2020 stating that they have a so-called porn video of mine and they recorded it while visiting adult websites and will share it to my friends and family. The email demanded a ransom of about $1900 and included some stupid old password of mine to prove they actually got me but I don't currently use that password for either of my accounts anymore.. I hope this is nothing to worry about?

Thanks cuz the threatener just told me that I went to an adult website and I dunno how to do that.I only learned yesterday to complete my Google acct and I had to change my email and password s I'm crying right now someone please tell this guy I don't get paid until the 3rd then I'll buy his stuff if he'll stop out lically lying on me!!

I got the same one with one of my passwords 5 years ago.
I panicked so bad, cause I believe their threat for a few seconds. But, then I ended up reading your experiences as well!
Thanks every one for sharing.

I received this email today, and like some of you, I got freaked out! The request amount was $520. However, I am relieved to know it is a scam. Needless to say, I have changed my passwords.

I keep getting these. The password that was used on one of these was from 2008-2013. This time I had 50 hours to comply with an amount of 700.00.

I got the same email.

FTC web admin: instead of linking this (email bitcoin scam) article to the generic complaint page, how about linking it to the correct form for reporting a problem like this one?

Just got one today. Went into Spam. Only noticed as I was looking for a Doctor e-mail. Sent report to FBI & so on. Do to my e-mail account, they think I'm a dude.. happens a lot but tipped me off they have no much info on me, more so since they stated they have vid of me. If they did, they would know I'm not a dude.

I seem to have received a similar email somewhere about a month ago with similar details. Though I did not click it and I only discovered it now by checking spam folders, I know for a fact the password mentioned is not my current email password (bruh moment). I received the email from a person named "Andrew Turner".

I received one the other day and one a month or two ago, threatening to tell my contacts about all the porn sites I had visited and show them a video they had taken of me , they had part of a password too. Deleted immediately, they think we’re all gullible fools:

I received an email in August that I didn't check out until yesterday, of something similar to the new ones. The weird thing is, I don't use my webcam for anything other than Zoom, and I don't remember signing up for any adult websites with the password the hacker mentioned (might have been hacked by a second hacker). The amount was somewhere in the thousands, but I never paid it (because I saw the email about a month too late and also I don't know how bitcoin works) and no action has been done related to the blackmail, so no footage was sent (as far as I know). I don't know how to report to the FBI while still keeping privacy

I got the same email almost word for word asking for bitcoin on October 2019, and I didn't see it until I was clearing my spam folder today September 2020. The email stated that they installed a Trojan in my OS that can pick up any change in passwords, and that I have 48 hours to give them money and that the “clock“ starts as soon as I open the email. Is that even possible? Can only opening an email start any "countdown"?

I got the same like

Hëllo!

í'm thе prоgrãmmêr whô háckеd întô yóùr dеvìce's õS.

î'vê beën оbsërving yоú fôr wеeks now.
Thé thìng ïs, yòû'vë bêén infectêd wïth malwarë thrôûgh thé âdúlt wèbsìtê yöu vïsítëd. in cãsе yòú'rе nòt fаmilïår wîth ît, ï'll expläïn. Thè Trõján virüs gìvés më fùll âccêss ànd còntról övêr yоür còmputër оr ány ôther dêvicè õn yöur lõcal.
ìt implîês thât i cãn séê êvêrythìng ón yoúr scrêén, túrn on my camêrã ànd mícróphònê, bút yoù do nõt knöw áboût ît. ì àlso hàvê accêss tо ãll yоür còntäcts, socïâl nétwórking dâtá ând ãll yòûr córrespöndencê. Why didn't yôür äntîvïrüs dеtèct ány mãlwàrè? ânswеr: My målwarë úsès å drìvеr, í úpdáte ïts sìgnãturés ëvêry 4 hоürs tо kêep yõür äntîvìrûs sílent.
î hâvе mádе å vìdèó shöwing hôw yòü sätisfy yõursêlf ón the léft sïde ôf thè scrëеn, аnd òn thê ríght sídè yóu sêê thé vïdеö yòù hávе gót wаtchïng. Wìth õnе clíck, ì càn sënd thìs vidëo tô àll yõür côntácts wìthin thë maíl ánd sóciâl nëtwõrks. ï cân álsò dìstrìbúte áccess tò all yôúr emàils ånd mеssågîng apps thät yoù ûsé.

if yоú wànt tо prévént thîs, åt thàt põint: Sënd $450(uSD) tô my bitcôìn wållèt (în cãsë yòû dô not knоw how tó dö ìt, then typе ìn tò Gòöglé: "Pûrchasé ã bîtcоin"). My Bìtcóín Wällèt: d45jRXK1n7 UUFy9BheQF nJrQTJgw3cYZ
aftèr gëttîng thе påymènt, ì wíll destròy thë vìdêõ and yöù won't hëär fróm mê àgаín. s) tó pày.
í sêë yõû'ré rèаdíng thìs èmåîl ãnd thê timеr stârted yóù ôpеnëd ît.

Timеr ìd: 71113093

Dó nоt try tô rеply me. ît dòësn't mäkе ány sеnsè (thë séndêr's ãddréss ìs genëràtеd åûtоmätïcálly).
Fìlíng a cömplåïnt sömëwhèrë döèsn't mаkë sënse, bècaúsê thís еmaïl cаnnõt be trãckêd, ànd néithër cån my bîtcòïn addrëss.
î dón't mаkе místàkès.

ìf i find that yòù shãrèd thïs mèssаgé wíth sômèbõdy èlsé, thê vïdèõ will bë dïstribûted ïmmédïãtèly.
Goõd lûck wïth thät.

I received an email exactly like this on August 16, 2020.

I got one too. I deleted the gmail account and opened a new one. It was in my spam folder. I blocked the person before deleting the account.
It was not an important email , one I used when places make you give an email address to look at their site like Wayfair.

Anyway, that’s what I did.

Mine came from
Walker kottkeconstruction1

I got one a couple of days ago too, I get them every year on my school account saying that they have my password which is my password but I don't use that password anymore and it's identical to everyone else's so this must be one person or multiple copying and pasting and scaring people out of their money like sickos.

I received this same email. It gave me anxiety at first and I started downloading virus protection to my phone to make sure that my phone is not actually compromised. Scammers are stupid.

I got the same email yesterday. Turned out he had managed to hack into an old FB account I handn't used in years. I thought I had the account deleted but I guess not. FB has locked the account too so I cannot get in to do anything about it.
He's got an old password but he's missed a few things. Bitcoin is not legal in my state, I have duct tape over all my webcams so there's no video of me, and I just got this laptop recently and I bought it used on Ebay so if there is any video from my laptop it's the previous owners . At first glance, getting an email like this is scary but stop and think about it. You'll find the loopholes that they miss.

Got the same email today, September 28th, 2020. So it’s still going around. I knew immediately it had to be a scam but it still makes the heart race for a minute.

Received same note as everyone else, verbatim. Except they asked for $1013 or something close to that amount. Ruined my morning until I started putting the pieces together and realizing that it must be a scam. Thanks FTC!

For anyone worrying, I got the exact same email word for word last Thursday & ignored it and nothing has happened. Yes it did have a password that I used for everything in the past but no longer use it for most things, changed the last account I used it for now. Nothing to worry about, change your passwords & please don’t send them money!!

I received the basic e-mail as above and mentioned that it knew i was pleasuring myself and had video of me doing it.
Thing is - it came almost immediately after I was dong what it said I was doing.
Wanted $ 950 and the e-mail came to my work e-mail which really got me worried.
You first think , how did it turn on my video camera and/or how did it know I was doing what it said. Have received it 2 times about a week apart and it gave me week to pay each time .

I know ******** is one of your password on day of hack..
Lets get directly to the point.

Not one person has paid me to check about you.
You do not know me and you're probably thinking why you are getting this email?
in fact, i actually placed a malware on the adult vids (adult porn) website and you know what, you visited this site to experience fun (you know what i mean).

When you were viewing videos, your browser started out operating as a RDP having a key logger which provided me with accessibility to your display and web cam.
immediately after that, my malware obtained every one of your contacts from your Messenger, FB, as well as email account.
after that i created a double-screen video. 1st part shows the video you were viewing (you have a nice taste omg), and 2nd part displays the recording of your cam, and its you.

Best solution would be to pay me $1042.

We are going to refer to it as a donation. in this situation, i most certainly will without delay remove your video.

My -BTC -address: 1MbumcLtt2dnUXHfcRpax66P5YToJpUdew
[case SeNSiTiVe, copy & paste it]

You could go on your life like this never happened and you will not ever hear back again from me.
You'll make the payment via Bitcoin (if you do not know this, search 'how to buy bitcoin' in Google).

if you are planning on going to the law, surely, this e-mail can not be traced back to me, because it's hacked too.
I have taken care of my actions. i am not looking to ask you for a lot, i simply want to be paid.

if i do not receive the bitcoin;, i definitely will send out your video recording to all of your contacts including friends and family, co-workers, and so on.

Nevertheless, if i do get paid, i will destroy the recording immediately.

If you need proof, reply with Yeah then i will send out your video recording to your 8 friends.

it's a nonnegotiable offer and thus please don't waste mine time & yours by replying to this message.

I just got one of these emails a few days ago and it was in my spam, I already know it’s a scam and I always have my camera on my computer taped off, and I can also see the green light if or when my camera is being used.... so therefore I don’t know how they would of gotten this “video” and all the contact info from the people that I know. One thing that blows my mind is how they got one of my outdated passwords I haven’t used in a while.

I have received the same email with exactly the same wording but for 1042$. I really panicked and am still. Did they contact you guys again, did they do anything that they are claiming because it’s a matter of reputation and many things. What should I do now, should I be worried and I can’t afford to pay that much money. Please someone help me with this issue.

I received the same email.

I received the same email today from 3 different people, each demanding a different amount of $. I don’t use the camera on my ipad except to Facetime with my family or ZOOM for business, so I immediately knew it was a scam.

I got same msg yesterday, worried for few secs as my (password) was the mail subject.
After I read the email, I realised it's typical fraud method with cheesy lines and stuff. Changing the password solves everything, there's no such thing as a malware recording your screen and your camera, and a website having all access to your devices and data simply by just visiting sites. I've seen lot of worried comments on this post so just a heads-up. There was a massive breach few months back, Don't worry just change your password and you good

How the heck did they know my password though, close but not exactly

I just received an email from Bitcoin through PayPal stating I had a charge through Bitcoin $499.98. When I called Bitcoin they told me I had charges from TX, WA and OH for charges. They told me I needed to go to a store and purchase a Bitcoin card and give them the receipt number. This was all getting too bizarre and I quickly Goggled what to do and this FTC site showed up. I hung up and called my bank and she told me I was probably the tenth person she had talked to this week about this scam.

What about video call scamming

thanks to everyone who's reported this, I got the exact same email and although I was not taken in entirely, it did cause me some concern. Seeing others report the identical email and say that nothing happened has given me some considerable relief.
Thanks to all that have reported this online and confirmed that nothing happens if you ignore it.
Changing passwords now though.

All the best

Hi. I have also recieved the email. I hope such scammers are dealth with a firm hand.

Hi.can l asking you now company investli lite for bitcoin...l have problems with company take my money 2 time for payment..can help me

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