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Is the Porn Blackmail Scam Real?

by on April 22, 2020
in Computer Safety & Support, News, Computers and Software, Blog :: 675 comments

Techlicious editors independently review products. To help support our mission, we may earn affiliate commissions from links contained on this page.

What would you do if you received an email from someone claiming to have hacked your computer and recorded you via your webcam while you were engaged in watching porn, then threatening to send the video to everyone in your email and social media contact lists if you don’t pay a $260 ransom? Would you pay the ransom? Even if you’ve never viewed porn, what if they made the same threat to reveal the private details of all your emails?

This is exactly the situation some of our readers found themselves in recently, and they contacted us for help on how to proceed.

Here is an example of one the emails [grammatical errors left intact]:

Good Morning my friend. I represent the group of web criminals in Iran. I use this mail address because we think that you will check it. Few times ago my team put the virus on web-site with porn and as far as you clicked on a play button your system started shooting your screen and activating camera to capture you self-abusing. Eventually I mean you understand what compromising evidence Ive earned. Moreover, this software made your device act as dedicated server with plenty of functions like keylogger, parser etc. To sum up, my software picked all data, especially all your contacts from messengers, e-mails, social networks. If you wanna make me silent you must make a transaction of 260 dollars with bitcoin. 1K2auXQEKz7Ro8cRa2xr3bAPV2n6KT5vi1 You must use it as usual credit card number. If you send bitcoins nobody will see your shame. Watch youtube manuals about methods of buing BTC... I can offer you this exchanger: localbitoins.com.  If you have a problem with this, you can search comfortable ATM for bitcoin at coin atm radar. I give you no more than twenty four hours since you read our message to pay. You can complain cops, but they can not find us I use bot network, and of course we live abroad. If you want us to show proofs we will share it to seven mates from your data after that you will be given their contacts. So you will ask them if something strange was received about you. For some questions just reply. Dont be fullish, AmAZinGcRackeR$.

Scary, right? And there have been instances where victims’ computers were hacked, they were filmed in various states of undress (or worse) and then blackmailed that may make this threat seem all too real. But there are several indications that this is nothing more than a phishing scam, hoping to rope in active porn watchers with false threats (an easy demographic to target via mass email given that the world’s largest porn site, Pornhub.com, gets 75 million visitors PER DAY).

First, there is nothing in the email that demonstrates they know anything personally about you: it’s not addressed to you by name and there’s no detail about what site you supposedly visited and when. Nor did they supply a screenshot of the “self-abusing” they allege to have captured. In fact, they are explicitly discouraging you from asking for proof, by threatening to share said “proofs” with your “mates” if you ask. That is completely contrary to how we would expect a real hacker/blackmailer to act – if I wanted to scare the bejesus out of you to get you to pay, the first thing I would do is show you a compromising screen capture to prove that this is very, very real.

Another red flag is that when our readers ran scans using antimalware tools, no malware was detected. Antimalware tools aren’t perfect, but the better ones should have picked up the type of remote administration tool (RAT) described in the email.

Searching the web, there are reports of people receiving similar email scams, going back at least to last fall. The wording of the email varies, including where the scammers claim they’re from, the nature of their threat and the amount of money being demanded. Some people are falling for them, but fortunately not many. I researched a selection of the bitcoin accounts used in these scams and none of the emails had duped more than a handful of victims.

Unfortunately, these scams will likely continue and morph into new threats as the ubiquity of bitcoin makes it easier for scammers to hide behind these accounts and for victims to pay. In fact, while this article was originally written in March of 2018, Sophos security recently released a new study, based on millions of porn blackmail emails that were sent between September 2019 and March 2020, demonstrating this to be the case. During that period, sextortion emails made up 4.23% of all spam observed by Sophos. The study also showed scammers are using new methods for obfuscating email content to evade spam filters, enabling them to collect nearly a half million dollars in payments from victims during the same period. Fortunately, despite some payouts, potential victims seem to be becoming wise to the scam, as only half a percent of the Bitcoin addresses used in the spam messages received any payment, according to Sophos.

So, if you get one of these emails, should you pay the ransom before all your friends find out what you’ve been up to?

The answer is no, don’t be “fullish”.

[EDITOR'S NOTE REGARDING PASSWORD APPEARING IN THE EMAIL SCAM 7/12/18: A number of people have posted in the comments that they received a version of the email which includes a real password they've used in the past. Does this mean that they should be concerned? The answer is No and Yes. No, you shouldn't be concerned that your computer was hacked and you were actually filmed watching porn - it's still a scam. But, yes, you should be concerned that your password has been leaked through a data breach. Security researcher Troy Hunt has uncovered more than 500 million passwords leaked through these breaches. That password in the email was likely one of them. 

If it is still an active password for you, the scam email should be a big wake up call that you need to ensure you are using unique and secure passwords for every one of your accounts. We strongly recommend a password manager like Dashlane or 1Password , which will automatically check your passwords to see if they have been revealed in a breach and help you create unique, secure ones for every site.]

[EDITOR'S NOTE WARNING ABOUT ATTACHMENTS 7/20/18: One reader reported receiving an attachment titled "Invoice" with the porn scam email. If you get an attachment, DO NOT OPEN IT. Email attachments are one of the primary ways hackers use to install malware on your computer, which could turn this fake malware scam into a very real one.]

[EDITOR'S NOTE ABOUT EMAIL SPOOFING 10/19/18: Many readers are commenting that the porn blackmail email appears to be sent from their own email address, causing added concern the hacking claims may be real. But don't be fooled. Email spoofing has been around for a long time and is relatively easy to do. Usually the message headers will reveal the true sending email address. Here's how to tell if an email has been spoofed.]

[EDITOR'S NOTE ABOUT WORK VS PERSONAL EMAILS 1/21/19: A number of people are expressing concern in the comments that the blackmail email is coming to their work email, instead of their personal email (or both). It doesn't matter — an email address is a email address as far as this scam goes. Billions of emails have been leaked over the years, many of those from business-focused services such as Dropbox, LinkedIn and Adobe. If I check to see which of my email addresses have been involved in breaches, my work email has been breached many more times than my personal email.

Originally published 3/12/18. Updated 4/22/2020 with new data from Sophos

[Image credit: Man in a dark room at a computer via BigStockPhoto]



Discussion loading

No, it's not real.

From John Smith on September 20, 2018 :: 4:24 pm

Here’s one that showed up - in one of my mailboxes.  It’s all crap, including the embedded pixel image they claimed to have.  What’s stupid about it, is I can recognize a password I have.  Scammers are stupid.


932242321865006 one of your password. Lets get right to the point. You do not know me and you are most likely wondering why you’re getting this mail? No one has compensated me to check about you.

In fact, I actually setup a software on the 18+ streaming (sex sites) web-site and do you know what, you visited this website to have fun (you know what I mean). When you were watching videos, your web browser initiated working as a RDP that has a key logger which gave me accessibility to your screen as well as cam. Immediately after that, my software program obtained your complete contacts from your Messenger, FB, and e-mail . And then I made a double video. 1st part shows the video you were viewing (you have a good taste ; )), and next part shows the view of your web camera, yea its u.

You actually have just two choices. Why dont we look at each one of these possibilities in particulars:

First choice is to just ignore this message. In that case, I will send out your very own tape to every bit of your contacts and thus think regarding the humiliation you feel. And likewise should you be in a romance, exactly how it is going to affect?

Next alternative will be to give me $3000. We will describe it as a donation. In this instance, I will straightaway remove your video recording. You could go on with your daily ro utine like this never occurred and you will never hear back again from me.

You’ll make the payment via Bitcoin (if you don’t know this, search “how to buy bitcoin” in Google).

BTC Address to send to: 1BFtaosxbo4tH4GZ8pXXs7hTapCknVfEaV
[case SENSITIVE so copy & paste it]

If you are wondering about going to the authorities, well, this e mail can not be traced back to me. I have dealt with my actions. I am just not trying to charge a fee a lot, I would like to be paid.

You now have one day to pay. I’ve a special pixel within this e-mail, and right now I know that you have read through this email message. If I don’t receive the BitCoins, I will definately send out your video to all of your contacts including family members, coworkers, and so forth. Having said that, if I receive the payment, I will destroy the video immediately. If you need proof, reply with Yeah & I definitely will send out your video to your 8 contacts. This is a non-negotiable offer, so please do not waste mine time and yours by replying to this email message.

Reply

hahahha 1900 keep spying on me

From Joe Esquivel on September 24, 2018 :: 7:52 pm

why spying on me i do know how is done but why?

Reply

Same scam, but came from my own email?

From Jonathan Wald on September 25, 2018 :: 6:03 pm

I got the same scam email today, but it came from my own email address, even though the password they cited is very old.

How could they send an email from my address without the current password?

And is there any action I should take?

Thanks for the article about this scam, it was a definite relief to me!

Reply

Another one

From N2KMaster on September 27, 2018 :: 6:35 pm

Subject:you’re fucked, i really know your personal secret, therefore i suggest you to check out this.

Sender: admin@onoranzefunebribologna.info (went to the site, its someones funeral site overseas)

Body:Hi there n2kmaster

I’m planning to get straight to the point. I’m Osborne97 and I am aware of the facts you are trying to keep from your
partner and also all the others. Furthermore, i have information of exactly what you have been covering up. I won’t go into the details
right here in the event that your wife will find this, although you are aware of what i’m speaking about.

You do not really know me personally and also nobody hired me to check into you, Nor did i go out looking to melt you. It happens to be simply your
awful fortune that I landed across your adventures while working. Then i put in additional time rather than I
likely must have investigating your life. Seriously, I’m ready to ignore facts concerning you personally and help you get on with your wellbeing.
And also I’m about to offer you couple of solutions that may achieve that thing. only two choices in order to possibly forget this
letter, or simply pay me $1200. Let’s learn those 2 solutions in a bit more depth.

Option 1 would be to pay no attention to this particular email. Please let me explain just what could happen if perhaps you end up picking this trail. I will take this information and
deliver it to your spouse. And as insurance protection against you intercepting it before your spouse gets it, I will even send out copies to her
mates, parents and to all your closest community. Therefore, Kent, even if you plan to arrive clean with your lady, it is not going to
preserve her from the mortification she may feel if her family discover your sleazy info from me.

Solution Two will be to give myself $1200, We are going to name the following my “privacy payment”. So, let me tell you what arises in the event that you pick
this course. Your top secret continues to be your top secret. You carry on with your everyday life as though none of the following possibly occurred. Although you
may want to do a better job at attempting to keep your misdeeds hidden in long run.

At this stage you may be imagining, “I am going to just head over to the authorities.” Which is why I took further steps to be sure this mail can’t be
traced to me. And so this is just not help, and yes it won’t prevent the evidence from demolishing your daily life. I’m not seeking to crack
your bank, i simply wish to be rewarded for the amount of time packed into analyzing you.

Ok let me assume you may have come to obvious point that your very best choice should be to cover the fee, You certainly will pay me
incognito utilizing btc. If perhaps you want me to hold your personal secret, then simply send $1200 in bitcoin to the receiving bitcoin
address posted in the bottom of this message. Settlement should be acquired within 9 days right after you will get that. Tell no-one you will be making use of the bitcoin for or they would possibly not give It to you. The procedure to
obtain btc might take a few days so don’t put it off. If I do not receive bitcoin by the deadline, I am going to proceed and
release the proof to everybody. after which the very least you could do is tell your wife so that she can tell her family and friends before they see the truth themselves.

====== BTC 19GqTJDhu7A1qg7rnK3KS7tmCkCTMTz6xD ====

At first it was kinda convincing, however….he called me Kent, mentions a housekeeper, family and wife…....I am not named Kent, I have no housekeeper, my family is literally dead, and wife…...Well i split up with a girlfriend 2 weeks ago…..lol not exactly my wife. From that point on i was LAUGHING at how bad this was.

Reply

Can't believe people still fall

From scaredsheep on October 01, 2018 :: 12:31 am

Can’t believe people still fall for these things!

Several of the BTC addresses shown in the comments received some bitcoin already, some of them have around $10K in BTC!

For all of you who are scared because your password is in the message, didn’t you take a minute to think that the scammer is just sending that email to millions, knowing that some of the recipients will use that password?

For example, I can send a million emails starting with:

“hi, I know that your password is ‘iloveyou’”

and because “iloveyou” is one of the most common passwords, it will for sure be the password of thousands of the people targeted. And, unbelievably, many of them will get scared and send $3K in BTC!

Pretty impressive.

Reply

It's more complicated than that

From Jonathan Wald on October 01, 2018 :: 3:37 am

The password they included in my email was very specific to me - it’s not something anyone else would ever use - so they clearly had access.  But it was old, as with the other cases.

What I still don’t understand is how they sent the email from my email address….

Reply

Spoofing email addresses is easy

From Josh Kirschner on October 01, 2018 :: 3:46 pm

It’s very easy for scammers to spoof an email address, including your own (see https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/scammers-spoof-email-address/). If you were to dig into the underlying header details, you would be able to tell that it is spoofed, but most people don’t know how to do this (from Gmail, for example, hit the three dots in the upper right corner of your email to bring down the menu and click “show original”. You’ll see the true sender in the header details).

Reply

Thanks

From Jonathan Wald on October 01, 2018 :: 3:51 pm

I appreciate the explanation and the link smile

Hey Josh,I actually left a

From scaredsheep on October 02, 2018 :: 8:04 am

Hey Josh,

I actually left a much better explanation, including how passwords are retrieved, and I posted that before your comment.

Are you going to approve that comment? Or are you playing the role of some kind of referee in my conversation with Jonathan, and came here to close the case with your “admin” power?

What comment are you referring to?

From Josh Kirschner on October 02, 2018 :: 8:51 am

Sacredsheep,

Your comment is already live just above. We have no other comment from you open or closed in our system. I don’t play referee with comments, except to remove spam, obscene material and the like. Did you post something else that isn’t appearing here?

In this case, you didn’t answer the question about the email spoofing, so I did. Also, the answer you gave re passwords probably isn’t what’s happening here. It’s possible that they’re simply using one of the common passwords like “iloveyou” as a phishing tool, but from what I’ve read from those who have had this issue (and from Jonathan above), the password seems to be much more personalized. Suggesting that they’re leveraging passwords that have come from a data leak for much better targeted attacks

Josh

Hi Josh,I had posted a

From scaredsheep on October 02, 2018 :: 3:01 pm

Hi Josh,

I had posted a second comment right before yours, maybe 20 minutes before, where I answered all of Jonathan’s questions in detail, including email spoofing and how passwords can come from data leaks of poorly designed sites that don’t encrypt passwords.

Check your system, because maybe you were so busy responding that you missed the comment requiring approval or something.

Reply

Re-post it if you like

From Josh Kirschner on October 03, 2018 :: 12:39 pm

Again, we do not have that comment in our system. Perhaps there was a system issue when you tried to post it. If you would like to re-post it, please do. You’ll have better results that way than hurling implied insults towards me.

Reply

I said it's possible that

From scaredsheep on October 03, 2018 :: 3:51 pm

I said it’s possible that you were so busy responding that you missed the comment. Is that an insult in your country?

Reply

Mine is from my email address?

From C G on October 03, 2018 :: 8:01 am

I have an email, claiming to have my password (it’s not the password I use on my email, but it is a password I use elsewhere), but it’s been sent FROM my email address. I’m a little worried

Reply

test mail come on!!

From test mail come on!! on October 07, 2018 :: 6:33 am

My system prevents SPAM at all Try it.
I will kill you.

Reply

Emailed Inbox Today

From Ooblydoo on October 08, 2018 :: 12:46 pm

I a‌m well a‌wa‌re tha‌t ‘******’ i‌s o‌ne o‌f yo‌u‌r pa‌ss-wo‌rds. Let u‌s get stra‌i‌ght a‌wa‌y to‌ the po‌i‌nt.

Abso‌lu‌tely no‌ o‌ne ha‌s co‌mpensa‌ted me i‌n o‌rder to‌ check a‌bo‌u‌t yo‌u‌. Yo‌u‌ do‌ no‌t kno‌w me a‌nd yo‌u‌ a‌re pro‌ba‌bly thi‌nki‌ng why yo‌u‌‘re recei‌vi‌ng thi‌s e ma‌i‌l?

Well, I i‌nsta‌lled a‌ ma‌lwa‌re o‌n the 18+ vi‌ds (po‌rno‌gra‌phi‌c ma‌teri‌a‌l) web-si‌te a‌nd gu‌ess wha‌t, yo‌u‌ vi‌si‌ted thi‌s websi‌te to‌ experi‌ence fu‌n (yo‌u‌ kno‌w wha‌t I mea‌n). Whi‌le yo‌u‌ were vi‌ewi‌ng vi‌deo‌s, yo‌u‌r bro‌wser i‌ni‌ti‌a‌ted fu‌ncti‌o‌ni‌ng a‌s a‌ RDP ha‌vi‌ng a‌ key lo‌gger whi‌ch pro‌vi‌ded me wi‌th a‌ccess to‌ yo‌u‌r di‌spla‌y screen a‌nd web ca‌mera‌. Immedi‌a‌tely a‌fter tha‌t, my so‌ftwa‌re co‌llected yo‌u‌r enti‌re co‌nta‌cts fro‌m yo‌u‌r Messenger, FB, a‌s well a‌s e-ma‌i‌l . After tha‌t I crea‌ted a‌ do‌u‌ble-screen vi‌deo‌. Fi‌rst pa‌rt sho‌ws the vi‌deo‌ yo‌u‌ were vi‌ewi‌ng (yo‌u‌‘ve go‌t a‌ ni‌ce ta‌ste ha‌ha‌h), a‌nd next pa‌rt sho‌ws the vi‌ew o‌f yo‌u‌r web ca‌mera‌, yea‌h i‌ts u‌.

Yo‌u‌ get ju‌st two‌ po‌ssi‌bi‌li‌ti‌es. Lets rea‌d ea‌ch o‌f these cho‌i‌ces i‌n a‌spects.

Fi‌rst a‌lterna‌ti‌ve i‌s to‌ neglect thi‌s messa‌ge. In su‌ch a‌ ca‌se, I wi‌ll send o‌u‌t yo‌u‌r ta‌pe to‌ every o‌ne o‌f yo‌u‌r perso‌na‌l co‌nta‌cts. Thi‌nk a‌bo‌u‌t the sha‌me yo‌u‌ wi‌ll see. In a‌ddi‌ti‌o‌n i‌f yo‌u‌ ha‌ppen to‌ be i‌n a‌n i‌nti‌ma‌te rela‌ti‌o‌nshi‌p, preci‌sely ho‌w thi‌s wi‌ll ha‌ve a‌n effect o‌n yo‌u‌?

In the seco‌nd pla‌ce cho‌i‌ce i‌s to‌ gi‌ve me $7000. We a‌re go‌i‌ng to‌ descri‌be i‌t a‌s a‌ do‌na‌ti‌o‌n. In thi‌s ca‌se, I mo‌st certa‌i‌nly wi‌ll pro‌mptly delete yo‌u‌r vi‌deo‌ta‌pe. Yo‌u‌ ca‌n go‌ o‌n wi‌th yo‌u‌r wa‌y o‌f li‌fe li‌ke thi‌s never o‌ccu‌rred a‌nd yo‌u‌ su‌rely wi‌ll never hea‌r ba‌ck a‌ga‌i‌n fro‌m me.

Yo‌u‌ wi‌ll ma‌ke the pa‌yment thro‌u‌gh Bi‌tco‌i‌n (i‌f yo‌u‌ do‌ no‌t kno‌w thi‌s, sea‌rch fo‌r

Reply

Did you ever get anything

From Jay on December 09, 2020 :: 1:24 am

Did you ever get anything after that spam email?

Reply

Exact same email!

From Natalie on February 24, 2021 :: 8:54 pm

Ooblydoo I received this exact same email and I am so relieved I’m not the only one. Makes me feel so much better that it’s nothing more than a phishing scam. This exact scenario was the plot of an episode on Black Mirror. Creepy.

Reply

Similar Email

From Eylul on October 08, 2018 :: 3:46 pm

I’ve received a similar email 5 days ago. I opened the email after three days and they are threatening that the count down to pay which was 48hrs starts after I open the email (is this serious?) I was so scared that I permanently deleted all my social media accounts including my gmail (the one I received the email) and google accounts..Am I safe this way?
I didn’t know that I can report it as a phishing scam, I tried to recover the email but it says they’ll respond after 3-4 days. Do I have to recover the email to report them or Am I safe this way, no need to recover it? (P.S. I don’t care about recovering any of my accounts)

Reply

You were safe before

From Josh Kirschner on October 09, 2018 :: 2:03 pm

This is just a scam and there was no need to delete your email or your accounts. You were safe before you deleted them and you’re no more or less safe now. I wouldn’t bother recovering your email purely for the sake of reporting them. The likelihood anything would come of that is pretty low.

Reply

Same here

From Jane on October 08, 2018 :: 5:42 pm

I had one tonight too using my old password which I presume they got off the Linkedin hack a while back. I don’t even have camera or even web cam on my PC so they cannot have pictures of me doing anything sexual.

However it is worrying they have my work email address and that old password so it is quite a specifically targetted at me demand supposedly from Russia.
I will ignore it

Reply

In German?

From Mark Gay on October 10, 2018 :: 4:44 am

I’m not a German speaker but received the threat in German. I put it into Google Translate and the text is like all the others being described. Should I be worried?

Reply

Any experience?

From Mark on October 10, 2018 :: 5:34 am

Hello!

I looked carefully comments but have not see any that would tell that someone got such an email, have ignored it and nothing happened. Would be really grateful to receive such an info or a reference to such info since I have myself got a similar e-mail to my work email but with the password from a private email. The password was current and was not changed many years at the moment I’ve got the e-mail, changed now. I am almost sure (not 100%) they do not have my video but anyway they know a lot about mean can really easily get my contacts via social networks or otherwise, etc. In principle, even without having a video, they are still able to harm me in many ways. On the other hand, I think the danger even increases if I pay them.

So I would appreciate it very much if someone could share a post-experience. I mean a real story that someone have got such an email have paid or have not paid and what has happened afterwards.

My deadline approaches in about two hours, so please help me understand the situation.

Reply

Help needed

From Mark on October 10, 2018 :: 6:36 am

HELP ME PLEASE, SHARE a POST-experience

Reply

Is there a way to report this

From Question on October 10, 2018 :: 9:53 am

I have been getting these emails for about a month now.  They are using an old password and just my last name.  These are coming to my work account.  I have never been on a porn site in my life.  I have changed all my passwords, and have a different one for any login i have.  I have not responded, although am sorely attempted to.
So i have three questions.
1.  Are these creeps “manufacturing” videos? 
2.  Do they ever actual send one out to friends etc
3.  Is there an agency to report this type of thing to and if so, who?
Thanks
Questioning how to stop these creeps.

Reply

New variant of the blackmail showing up

From nerfherderender on October 13, 2018 :: 1:16 am

Received today. Slightly different than what I’ve seen reported.

———————————-

[MY NAME] you id [POSSIBLE OLD PASSWORD]

You can head to the police, but they will not work out your situation.

I am an immigrant, so there is no chance that they find out my whereabouts accurately.

Your computer has been breached by my adaware.

We turned on your PC cam the moment you accessed the erotic site.

I have the record of you touching your private parts.

We also took your contact list, so if you want me to keep this private, you must to remit 600 usd in cryptocurrency.

Use this online wallet number 14i3Qp3VHxHM7KJRK4uVNJ5giiE46SAoLf to pay the sum.

When you reply to this electronic mail, my system will right away send the evidence that I have full control over your device.

So, instantly after your response, you will get fresh funds transfer instructions and you will need to transfer 1,200 $ in place of the initial amount.

Best of luck. Don’t forget about the consequences.

PS. Be quick about it! You have just 24 hours!

I not very fluent in English but I hope you get the point. Sending the money is the only way to prevent it from happening. Don`t try any funny stuff, it`s futile. This email was only used to notify me that you got the message. From China with love.

Reply

I received spam too

From I hate spam on October 13, 2018 :: 1:27 pm

I received this exact email yesterday

Reply

i also got this email(please report him)

From noone on October 14, 2018 :: 12:52 am

lxtrel@yahoo.com is email of scammer.his name is robert oppenheimer.

You do not know me and I don’t know you. You are probably wondering why you’re getting this e-mail.
I’ll get right to the point. I am a hacker. I have compromised a couple porn sites and breached your computer when you visited. When you were watching porn, my malware had access to your files, screen and web cam.

What did I do?
I made a split-screen video. Right side shows your webcam video and the left side shows your screen (you’ve got good taste hahah). I also downloaded a list of your contacts from your email and other social media. I have all of these information stored with me already, so powering off your computer or deleting your social media will not make a difference.

I don’t know you and I don’t really care to. You seem like a decent person, just the type that would be happy to make this problem go away. As long as you follow my intructions I will delete every file, video and photo about you and never bother you again. There is only one copy of everything and I will destroy them if you comply. I’m not an unreasonable person, I will be happier to destroy the files than destroy your life. Now it’s your turn to be reasonable. If you don’t comply within 24 hours (I know you read this email because of a special pixel I’ve placed in it) I will send the video to all of your contact list. Every person that knows you in any capacity fill receive it in a few hours.

Let’s avoid all that. It’s very simple. Send me 300 USD worth of bitcoin at this address:

1HUaEPVKjWbWySdEPZeacPKxBreW5TJcqo
It’s cAsE sensitive, so you need to copy and paste it.

Google “how to buy bitcoin” if you are confused.
Reply to this email if you have any doubts and I will send the video to 10 of your contacts, they would verify the contents for you. I’m in a remote corner of the world, well hidden, so going to police or sharing your problem with other people will end up bad for you. You have 24 hours to buy $300 worth of bitcoin and send it to my address above. Try anything else end you will suffer. You have been warned.
TNISPZDQPSKKQGRLZTUNPVSPBHTDVNCGTLQHUQ

Reply

Same Problem....

From Kyly on October 15, 2018 :: 4:29 pm

My Mail today….

from: Aaron @ Smith534 . edu


I know XXXXXXX one of your pass word. Lets get right to the purpose. You don’t know me and you’re most likely thinking why you are getting this e mail? Nobody has paid me to investigate you.

In fact, I placed a malware on the X vids (sexually graphic) site and there’s more, you visited this web site to experience fun (you know what I mean). When you were watching videos, your browser initiated functioning as a Remote control Desktop with a key logger which provided me with access to your display screen and web camera. Right after that, my software program gathered all your contacts from your Messenger, social networks, as well as emailaccount. And then I made a video. First part shows the video you were viewing (you’ve got a good taste lol), and second part displays the recording of your cam, yeah its you.

You got just two options. Why dont we review each one of these options in details:

First option is to dismiss this e mail. In this instance, I most certainly will send your videotape to almost all of your personal contacts and also imagine concerning the shame you can get. Not to forget in case you are in a romantic relationship, how it would affect?

Other alternative is to pay me $2000. I will think of it as a donation. In this case, I most certainly will immediately erase your video. You could carry on with your daily life like this never happened and you never will hear back again from me.

You will make the payment by Bitcoin (if you don’t know this, search for “how to buy bitcoin” in Google).

BTC Address: 19mMUuaMZrcbEqFsFpfLxkXe1Keu32BjCR
[case-SENSITIVE copy & paste it]

If you have been wondering about going to the cop, okay, this message can not be traced back to me. I have covered my actions. I am just not trying to ask you for money a huge amount, I just like to be paid for.

You have one day to pay. I have a specific pixel in this email, and at this moment I know that you have read through this email. If I don’t get the BitCoins, I definitely will send out your video to all of your contacts including friends and family, co-workers, and so forth. Nevertheless, if I receive the payment, I will destroy the video right away. If you need evidence, reply with Yes and I will send out your video recording to your 15 contacts. It is a nonnegotiable offer and thus please do not waste mine time and yours by replying to this e-mail.

——thank you very much…..

Reply

so thankful for this thread

From Deb on October 16, 2018 :: 12:49 pm

I got one today with an old password that I had used in the first line. Threw me for a loop. worried all morning then did a google and landed here. I have LastPass and went in and updated anything that even resembled that password. I will be updating everything as I log in from now on. As for the email wanting $7500!! I am ignoring.
Thank you!!

Reply

I got this today

From Anon on October 16, 2018 :: 12:57 pm

Hi Josh, I reviewed this today from wonyoung@cdpickup.co.kr

It seems that, ******* - is your password. You may not know me and you are probably wondering why you are getting this e-mail, right?

Actually, I setup a malware on the adult vids (porno) web-site and guess what, you visited this site to have fun (you know what I mean). While you were watching videos, your internet browser started out functioning as a RDP (Remote Desktop) having a keylogger which gave me accessibility to your screen and web cam. After that, my software program obtained all of your contacts from your Messenger, FB, as well as email.

What did I do?

I backuped phone. All photo, video and contacts.
I created a double-screen video, 1st part shows the video you were watching (you’ve got a good taste haha ...), and 2nd part shows the recording of your web cam.

Exactly what should you do?

Well, in my opinion, $800 is a good price for our little secret. You’ll make the payment by Bitcoin (if you do not know this, search “how to buy bitcoin” in Google).

BTC Address: 1BARBfTXdwaRenZjcG8t2LAsbQm6abfw13
(It is cAsE sensitive, so you should copy-paste it)

Important:
You have TWO days(48 h) in order to make a payment. (I have a unique pixel in this e-mail, and at tis moment I know that you have read through this email message). If I do not get the BitCoins, I will certainly send out your video recording to all of your contacts including relatives, coworkers, and so on. Having said that, if I receive the payment - I’ll destroy the video immediately. If you need evidence, reply with “Yes!” and I’ll send out your video recording to your 6 contacts. It is a non-negotiable offer, so don’t waste my and yours time by responding to this message.

The password was legit but only for a betting account which I have changed. I can’t seem to find anything on the email address. Does this seem like a scam also?

Reply

Extortion Email Stinks!!

From Ann on October 16, 2018 :: 2:49 pm

Well I received this email today with the extortion threat, same as all the other emails.
First…What would Larry Flynt say?  Second what sad, pathetic low lives to feed off people’s guilt for a little bit of money. And lastly, report this…there are ways to track this kind of thing.
Ultimately don’t sweat it, it’s extortion created from bull$#!. p.s…Maybe lay off the Porn and go outside and connect with nature if this email hits home. wink    Also, put a piece of tape on your cam…especially if computer/laptop is in your bedroom. U never know who is watching!!  ;0

Reply

Why???

From Steve Johnson on October 16, 2018 :: 3:46 pm

Man, my email keeps getting messages like these every time. For Example:

“Hello, Victim.
I think I wanted to write you because I infected your computer with a virus while you were browsing porn.

I was able to access your camera with the virus, and as soon as you clicked play, I recorded you self abusing. Then, I made a copy of all your contacts, such as family, friends, and more shit.

If you want me to delete the video, just send me 2000$ in bitcoin to the following adress: w45w7dh78js9kd001jj

I give you 24 hours to do the payment. Or else, I will reveal your secret to the world.

Goodbye, and don’t forget the shame.”

Why do I keep getting these messages? Am I being targeted?

Reply

Me too

From Steve Johnson on October 16, 2018 :: 3:48 pm

Same, I keep getting these stupid messages. I wonder if my email is being targeted. These are obviously not real because it’s been 2 months since I kept getting these messages, and nothing happened. Btw, I don’t use any social media.

Reply

password, porn scam

From Kevin on October 16, 2018 :: 4:51 pm

has anyone had the video the scammer claims to have, sent to their contacts?

Reply

How are they able to make it look like this?

From Deyo on October 18, 2018 :: 10:25 am

Hello!

I’ve received the same email 3 times now, all saying I have 48hrs to pay. I figured it was a scam on the first one, but the thing I’m wondering is how the are able to make it say it was sent from and received by my email they claim to have hacked? When I clicked on my email it show the normal html “mailto:...” and opened my contact info on my phone. I have done a complete reset just because, and I’m not on Facebook or Twitter only IG and LinkedIn.

How do they do that? Make it look like I sent myself this email?

Reply

Email spoofing

From Josh Kirschner on October 19, 2018 :: 11:58 am

See the note I added to the bottom of the article about email spoofing - what it is and how to recognize it.

Reply

Same old story!

From Deano on October 19, 2018 :: 4:43 am

I just checked my emails on my iPad for the first time since Tuesday because i’ve not had the time until now due to work.
Guess i missed the deadline then (oh no, i’m doomed!! 😂).

I can’t remember the last time i watched porn online, but even if i were a ‘serial whacker’ then I still wouldn’t be worried in the slightest as they’re obviously phishing and if they were real threats then as others have mentioned they’d get massively higher results by just sending you a single frame of the video with the text something similar to ‘send (e.g,) 500 bt or the video will be sent to all of your contacts’. Instead of waffling on about their grammer and where they’re from.

Just for reference here’s the text of mine:

Howdy.

Hopefully you actually don\‘t mind my language grammar, since i\‘m from Germany. I infected your device with a malware and now have all of your private data from your operating-system.

It previously was set up on an adult site and then you have picked the movie and viewed it, my program immediately gain access to your system.

Then, your front-cam documented you going manual, also i captured a footage that you\‘ve looked at.

Immediately after a short while it also picked up all your device contacts. If you ever need me to clear off your all that i have got - transfer me 860 us in btc its a crypto-currency. Its my account address : 18nLTan27VytmaG54rutYQeNyBdBVKiyQc

At this point you will have 27 hours. to decide Immediately after i will get the transaction i will get rid of this movie and every thing entirely. In any other case, please be certain that your footage is going to be submitted to your contacts.

Reply

Kinda got me freaked out

From TH on October 19, 2018 :: 11:11 am

Received this email from Diego Moroz noreply@ketuckysbestroof.com

Subject: Тicкеt#786590071 [my email address] 19/10/2018 06:44:39 The advice you dont want to pass

Hi there.

Expect you actually don’t care about my language sentence structure, since i’m from Saudi arabia. I toxified your gadget with a malware and now have all of your personal data out of your computer system.

It was set up on a mature site then you have picked the online video, clicked on it, my software immediately gain access to your system.

Then simply, your front-camera documented you playing with your stuff, in addition i captured a video that you’ve seen.

After a little while in addition, it picked up all of your device contact list. If you ever want me to clear off your all that i possess - transmit me 360 eu in btc it’s a crypto-currency. Its my btc wallet address - 1AeW3JxLZ5dD3nxQfwMUGj6SM3dFN2b7Ey

At this moment you will have 26hr s. to produce a decision The moment i will get the deal i’ll get rid of this evidence and every little thing completely. If not, please be certain this footage will be forwarded to all your contacts.

Please provide me with some comfort that this is a nothing more than a scam.

Reply

Did the article not give you comfort?

From Josh Kirschner on October 19, 2018 :: 12:02 pm

That’s exactly what I wrote about above.

Reply

Yes it did but a

From TH on October 19, 2018 :: 2:16 pm

Yes it did but a little extra reassurance certainly helps. Thanks.

Reply

Freaked me out too

From Cindy on October 22, 2018 :: 5:23 am

Received this from Angelia Bebo today. Freaked me out for a while until I read your post and Josh’s reply.

Subject: Ticket#864275445(my email address) 22/10/2018 09:38:25 Now we are really close

You can visit the police station but nobody can solve your problem.I am foreigner.it means they can not catch my location even for 7 months.

We upload a malware on your devise.We had access to your webcam,during your porn-site visit.Now I have a video material with you,touching your intimate parts.

We downloaded your contact list so if you want us to stay silent you must send 520 $ in Bitcoin.

Enter this wallet address - 17rr7Jux3iz2H9962djZKcQVgwDMw55Rv

(Something like a credit card number). I give you 28 h after clicking on this message for making the transaction.

Bye.Think about the disgrace.

Reply

i received this email too

From fm on October 22, 2018 :: 10:05 am

i received this email too

Reply

I got one similar today!!! SCAM

From yomera on October 19, 2018 :: 11:17 am

from:  hiroishi@osk-shiitake.or.jp
Hi, my victim.
I know your password - xxxxxxxx
This is my last warning.

I write you inasmuch as I put a trojan on the web page with pornography which you have visited.
My malware grabbed all your personal data and switched on your webcam which captured the process of your masturbation. Just after that the trojan saved your contact list.
I will remove the compromising video and data if you pay me 500 USD in bitcoin. This is wallet address for payment : 135qVXXBZb3v2tQcLJRA8UAndiUYNybh3J
(you can google on “how to buy bitcoin”)

I give you 24 hours after you view my message to make the payment.
As soon as you view the message I’ll know it right away.
It is not necessary to tell me that you have sent money to me. This address is connected to you, my system will delete everything automatically after transfer confirmation.
You can visit the police office but no one can’t help you.
If you try to cheat me, I’ll see it immediately!
I don’t live in your country. So nobody can’t track my location even for 9 months.
Don’t forget about the disgrace and to ignore, Your life can be ruined.

Reply

Received the exact same email

From Neal on October 20, 2018 :: 12:57 pm

Received the exact same email on 10/19. However, it referenced a different wallet address.  Language is exactly the same.

What bothered me about this is that it came from an email that looked “real”).  It looked like a real domain etc.

Anything to be concerned about?  Assume it is all just a scam.

Reply

I got this, this morning

From Anita on October 20, 2018 :: 1:01 pm

‘Hello!

My nickname in darknet is pebrook93.
I hacked this mailbox more than six months ago,
through it I infected your operating system with a virus (trojan) created by me and have been monitoring you for a long time.

So, your password from ******* is *********

Even if you changed the password after that - it does not matter, my virus intercepted all the caching data on your computer
and automatically saved access for me.

I have access to all your accounts, social networks, email, browsing history.
Accordingly, I have the data of all your contacts, files from your computer, photos and videos.

I was most struck by the intimate content sites that you occasionally visit.
You have a very wild imagination, I tell you!

During your pastime and entertainment there, I took screenshot through the camera of your device, synchronizing with what you are watching.
Oh my god! You are so funny and excited!

I think that you do not want all your contacts to get these files, right?
If you are of the same opinion, then I think that $886 is quite a fair price to destroy the dirt I created.

Send the above amount on my BTC wallet (bitcoin): 1NXNt72qfMhPZDffUEqryCYpEUzyR6LmgH
As soon as the above amount is received, I guarantee that the data will be deleted, I do not need it.

Otherwise, these files and history of visiting sites will get all your contacts from your device.
Also, I’ll send to everyone your contact access to your email and access logs, I have carefully saved it!

Since reading this letter you have 48 hours!
After your reading this message, I’ll receive an automatic notification that you have seen the letter.

I hope I taught you a good lesson.
Do not be so nonchalant, please visit only to proven resources, and don’t enter your passwords anywhere!
Good luck!’

It was in my junk folder. I was a little concerned since the header was a password I’ve used in the past and it was sent from my own email address but looking through these comments I feel a little better. Also the bit where it said I was funny and exciting was a big giveaway!

Reply

RECEIVED THE EXACT SAME Email

From NEAL on October 20, 2018 :: 2:01 pm

Like I said, what bothered me about mine was the fact that it came from a real email address from a real domain host. 

Other than that, everything was the same - an old password, my first name, no real evidence of video, pics, contacts.  Just threats.

Does the email address make the scam any more “worrisome”?

Reply

I received this one

From Jimmy on October 21, 2018 :: 1:16 am

Mate i received the exact same thing the other day just with a different supposed darkweb nickname

I’m hoping one of the admin here can give us some peace of mind by pointing out it’s a scam, even though i’m 99% sure it is

Reply

my 48 hours are up--nothing to worry about

From Jessica Gorski on October 21, 2018 :: 10:00 pm

My privacy still is intact and I have the same exact message. breath easy =)

Reply

Should I be worried?

From linda on October 20, 2018 :: 4:22 pm

Basically, this is what I got sent for the second time but from a different person, I’m pretty sure. It says the same thing in the email as my last one, just a different password. Should I be worried and is there anything I could do? They said my password in the email I’ve used in the past but it’s not the current one I’m using. I also changed my password after I got that email.

Hello!

My nickname in darknet is kennett47.
I hacked this mailbox more than six months ago,
through it I infected your operating system with a virus (trojan) created by me and have been monitoring you for a long time.

So, your password from (email) is (password)

Even if you changed the password after that - it does not matter, my virus intercepted all the caching data on your computer
and automatically saved access for me.

I have access to all your accounts, social networks, email, browsing history.
Accordingly, I have the data of all your contacts, files from your computer, photos and videos.

I was most struck by the intimate content sites that you occasionally visit.
You have a very wild imagination, I tell you!

During your pastime and entertainment there, I took screenshot through the camera of your device, synchronizing with what you are watching.
Oh my god! You are so funny and excited!

I think that you do not want all your contacts to get these files, right?
If you are of the same opinion, then I think that $892 is quite a fair price to destroy the dirt I created.

Send the above amount on my BTC wallet (bitcoin): (link)
As soon as the above amount is received, I guarantee that the data will be deleted, I do not need it.

Otherwise, these files and history of visiting sites will get all your contacts from your device.
Also, I’ll send to everyone your contact access to your email and access logs, I have carefully saved it!

Since reading this letter you have 48 hours!
After your reading this message, I’ll receive an automatic notification that you have seen the letter.

I hope I taught you a good lesson.
Do not be so nonchalant, please visit only to proven resources, and don’t enter your passwords anywhere!
Good luck!

Reply

I got the same one,

From Claire on October 20, 2018 :: 6:01 pm

I got the same one, but with a different ‘darknet’ nickname. It’s just a scam, I don’t think we have anything to worry about.

Reply

Exactly the same email!

From Connor on October 20, 2018 :: 7:44 pm

Just a different darknet name! 

Hello!

My nickname in darknet is augustus61
I hacked this mailbox more than six months ago,
through it I infected your operating system with a virus (trojan) created by me and have been monitoring you for a long time.

So, your password from (email) is (password)

Even if you changed the password after that - it does not matter, my virus intercepted all the caching data on your computer
and automatically saved access for me.

I have access to all your accounts, social networks, email, browsing history.
Accordingly, I have the data of all your contacts, files from your computer, photos and videos.

I was most struck by the intimate content sites that you occasionally visit.
You have a very wild imagination, I tell you!

During your pastime and entertainment there, I took screenshot through the camera of your device, synchronizing with what you are watching.
Oh my god! You are so funny and excited!

I think that you do not want all your contacts to get these files, right?
If you are of the same opinion, then I think that $892 is quite a fair price to destroy the dirt I created.

Send the above amount on my BTC wallet (bitcoin): (link)
As soon as the above amount is received, I guarantee that the data will be deleted, I do not need it.

Otherwise, these files and history of visiting sites will get all your contacts from your device.
Also, I’ll send to everyone your contact access to your email and access logs, I have carefully saved it!

Since reading this letter you have 48 hours!
After your reading this message, I’ll receive an automatic notification that you have seen the letter.

I hope I taught you a good lesson.
Do not be so nonchalant, please visit only to proven resources, and don’t enter your passwords anywhere!
Good luck!

Reply

Nothing to worry about!

From Jessica on October 21, 2018 :: 10:06 pm

My 48 hours are up—no videos or passwords disclosed. Phew!! You’re fine. I installed a password manager after all this bs though. ha!

Reply

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