Racketeers Sending Fake Blackmail Emails Demanding Bitcoin Ransom

Updated on:
2804
Fake ransomware extortionists are running scams on unsuspecting internet users and demanding a Bitcoin ransom.

For every real criminal out there, there will always be a phony riding on the coattails of his success.

This is especially true when it comes to the vast and largely uncontainable dark web, where everyone’s success is someone else’s newest scam.

Your TOR usage is being watched

This has been the case in some of the unchartered areas of the internet where racketeers have jumped aboard the fake ransomware train which, in recent days, has brought them some business.

Normally, legitimate ransomware requires a fee to eradicate from the victim’s computer, an amount that is usually payable in Bitcoin for privacy reasons.

These insurgent racketeers are adopting the same extortion of Bitcoin payment, but with just one crucial modification: they do not deploy any ransomware. They send emails demanding bitcoin.

A number of people have already been bombarded with fake threat emails demanding an amount in Bitcoin, failure to which would lead to grave consequences. The racketeers take blackmail letter examples from the internet and modify them before sending it to you.

While the traditional ransomware threat demanding Bitcoin is capable of remotely deleting files or infecting it with viruses bitcoin blackmail virus, these racketeers are banking on panic and rash decision-making to keep their businesses thriving and Bitcoin flowing.

The Fake Threat Emails are poorly written; sent en Masse

Fake ransomware racketeering is on the rise.

The emails demanding Bitcoin are usually authored in poor English and often contain threats to leak private information if the Bitcoin ransom is not paid.

These Bitcoin extortionists lie to their victims that they possess sensitive information which, when leaked, would destroy reputations.

Since the emails are sent en masse, the practice is not an exact science; its success largely depends on sheer luck and the law of averages.

One of these fake ransomware emails has surfaced.

The extortionists demand a ransom of 1 Bitcoin and appear to have covered every angle in the email, since it also contains information on how to buy Bitcoin and how to make the payment.

A quick analysis shows that the Bitcoin thieves rely on this single email, seeing that they send it to a large number of individuals at a time in the hopes that at least one or two will take the bait.

Recipients of such emails are advised to simply ignore them.

However, this does not mean that all Bitcoin demanding ransomware emails should automatically be discounted; some may actually carry a real threat to the victim.

Some Ransomware Threats Should Be Taken Seriously

Calling to mind the case of the infamous Ashley Madison breach, it is easy to see how much damage some of these extortionists can inflict.

As usual, the case involved blackmail attempts and ransom demands in Bitcoin in order to resolve the matter.

Just to enforce the gravity of the situation, the blackmailers carried out their threats on several of the users.

Nevertheless, when approached by ransomware extortionist who demands Bitcoin in payment, the prudent thing to do is to not pay them.

As risky as that might seem, one should also consider the fact that these petty cybercriminals are not exactly upstanding citizens who will remove the ransomware as soon as you pay the Bitcoin ransom.

And for those who find themselves in the grasp of a Bitcoin-hungry extortionist, there are a number of free ransom removal tools at your disposal, not to mention assistance from the local authorities.

cyren detected malwares from emails coming from reputable banks

Also, people should refrain from opening strange or unexpected emails, whether they come from reputable sources or otherwise.

Cybersecurity firm Cyren once detected malware that was being spread using emails supposedly from various reputable banks.

Once opened, the malware is usually engineered to auto-install in order to steal information or infect your computer in other ways.

As such, prevention seems like the best option in this scenario.

Employing enough safety measures and caution to prevent becoming a victim is by far the best way to avoid being encumbered by such a situation.

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53 COMMENTS

  1. Anonymous

    I received such an email from someone trying to extort a considerable bitcoin payment. The worrying part is they revealed my password in the email. I have changed the passwords, but I am very worried.

    • Anonymous

      I got the same one. Password changed. Not worried.

    • Anonymous

      Same!

    • Anonymous

      I got one with my password in the subject line too. Very worried also. Not sure what to do.

    • Anonymous

      Who was the email from if I may ask? The one I got was an outlook message.

      • Anonymous

        Me too it was outlook.

    • Anonymous

      I got a similar one. If it weren’t for the fact that the subject line included a password I sometimes use for unimportant accounts, I would ignore it entirely since it claimed to have video of me doing nasty things while watching porn even though this has never happened AND my webcam is physically blocked.

      • Anonymous

        I got the same and I deleted it. The password was an old one

    • Anonymous

      I got that same email with one of my passwords. The threat is bogus but I to am alarmed by the password.

    • Anonymous

      I received one today myself. I am changing my password.

    • Anonymous

      I got one with my password in the subject line as well. To be clear, this password is the one I use for websites that are low-security or that I don’t care about but yet demand that I use a password. It’s my generic throw-away password. I would have been surprised if that password were not available on the dark web.

      There was also some garbage about using a pixel to let them know I read the email. That only works if images are loaded by default in emails. They are not. Hah!

    • Anonymous

      the same for me couple of days ago, the problem that they are very clever and creative in designing the scam or the blackmailing stories, we should ignore them and not even bother our mind thinking about them and try to report that to the e-mailing provider like google or Hotmail in order to stop such annoying thing

  2. Anonymous

    Sadly, I opened the email and told them to go pound sand.
    The response was a “receipt” for purchase of porn.
    Aargh..I know better!

  3. Anonymous

    I just got this Email demanding 2000 in Bitcoin my brothers a detective so I will show him

  4. Anonymous

    I just received an email that reveals my email password (half of it though) and other information. What do I need to do-ignore, go to police… ?!

  5. Anonymous

    I had a demand as well. The poorly written language was the first clue. I’m still baffled by the login/password it showed. I’ll be changing as many of my passwords as I can think of.

  6. Anonymous

    Anon I’ve just received one and they knew my password which is very concerning! Will be changing all passwords.

  7. Anonymous

    I got the same scam email and it included part of an old password to somehow convince me it was legit. The lack of specifics to me personally, the grammar mistakes and the lack of actual proof of a video make me realize it was a scam immediately. I was going to ignore it but instead wrote them back saying:

    Please send me the video. I would like to post it to my Youtube channel with your email address. Not only will you be famous with law enforcement and Interpol but I will make a lot of money with all the people coming to visit my channel. Porn videos have made many people rich and famous and I want to become rich as soon as possible.

  8. Anonymous

    The best thing is not to respond in any way. Also, to prevent someone using your computer camera to spy on you, simply place a piece of black tape over it. (You can easily pull it off and replace it if you want to take a photo of yourself.) It’s usually that small dot at center of the top screen border on your laptop. Another very important thing to do is to have one or more “junk” passwords to create accounts on any website which is not absolutely trusted. Never use these junk passwords on any of your trusted sites.

  9. Anonymous

    I received a very threatening email wanting 3500 for loading my contacts where they send photos of me while on a porn site. Glad I know I don’t use porn sites so will Ignore and reported to RCMP. Recommend that everyone try to report even if scammed and humiliated

  10. Anonymous

    I just received today a detailed message with my password from the past where my email was hacked. I was threatened to make a bitcoin large payment($3000.00) or these sites and actions would be subjected by film to everyone in my contacts. What are my options and should I compromise. I avery concerned

  11. Anonymous

    Same here. They had an old password of mine.

  12. Anonymous

    They had a really old password I used. Wondering how they can access that information?

    • Anonymous

      just by guessing

  13. Anonymous

    Thanks for the info everyone. I just received this message this morning, which included the
    password for my Linux workstation. So, a bit of irony – the workstation has no webcam, and
    the risk of this malware affect this machine is pretty remote. I’ll change my password, of course.

  14. Anonymous

    i got one of these telling me to send money to ****** but i didn’t and nothing happened to me, it was dumb anway because nothing was wrong with my computer

  15. Anonymous

    I got one today. They showed me an old password I used only for Linked In. They claimed to have video of me watching porn (nope) and threatened to send it to my contacts.
    I cover my webcam, use unique pw’s for every website, so I’m not worried. I reported it to the FBI cyber crime division, reported the phishing to Google, and marked it as spam.

  16. Anonymous

    I just received a similar email, also including my password. The claims they are making about me are fake, but I just don’t understand how they got my password. I will be changing it of course. But is there a way to report these to our email providers besides just marking it as spam?

  17. Anonymous

    Received an email like everyone above today (old password in email subject, reference to porn site, “I have a video, pay me $2700 in bitcoin) although the English is decent but oddly conversational. Looks like maybe we were all included in the same scam attempt and they are trying to do email blasts. My guess is they got these email addresses and passwords from previous website data breaches.I don’t use the email address in question much but my guess is either LinkedIn or Blizzard.

  18. Anonymous

    I had one forwarded to me. I responded, told them I did not know what “bitcoins” might be and offered to pay with PayPal. So far, no response. I’m hoping they reply. I could jerk them around for a week before I get bored with the game. Its the slow time of the year for me at work anyway… 😉

  19. Anonymous

    I just received one yesterday. Same line: that I was on porn sites, made videos of myself. I copied all the info, was able to capture the email address the sender was using (Hubert Fries) and reported every bit of it to the FBI. I also reported it to my local FBI. My email also had a very old password I never use. Not since I had a desk top, and never had a camera on it! Do not let these deplorables frighten you. They depend on it. But I would advise taking the time, follow the FBI links and report your email. I had to copy and paste. Also include the header, and the email account the person used if you have it. They should have provided you with their bitcoin account number, so make sure every part of the email
    Is included. Yes, I was tempted to reply with a simple “the person this email was intended to reach is deceased”, but NO. it’s tempting, but don’t reply. Bring ‘em down! My best to all of you! (PS-I would never pose nude, or video that. I wouldn’t be able to look at it! 😂👍🏼)

  20. Anonymous

    I received such an email today demanding $7000. I wanted to write back saying that everyone already knows that I am a pervert but being a lazy pervert, I didn’t even bother. Maybe I will finally get my 15 minutes of fame.

  21. Anonymous

    Their price seems to have gone up. They are demanding $7,000 in Bitcoin from me. They insist that I pay to “BTC Address: 19YV11YdtxP2YPP71mbeySkn7tNL2PUkaQ” I googled that bitcoin account but it came back with nothing. It is apparent that English was not the first language of the author. The address in the message header (which is probably spoofed) is: 40.92.66.72. I hope there is some law enforcement agency somewhere that will go after this miscreant.

  22. Anonymous

    The email that I’ve received was well written demanding 2700 in bitcoins. Had my password and detailed information how they excessed my camera.
    If not paid in 24h all the pics go to everyone in my contacts.
    Should I be worried
    Annonamous

  23. Anonymous

    So lots of people posting that it happened to them, but I don’t see any resolutions offered.
    Anyone have some resolutions???

  24. Anonymous

    Just received an e-mail from Sherman Cormier . Long, elaborate text, asking me 8000 USD in bitcoins not to release a video of my web camera, supposedly recorded while visited a porn website.
    Please advice, my hair is turning white.

  25. Anonymous

    Just got one of these today and I am not giving a flying fuck about it, hahahaha

  26. Anonymous

    Received the same email today, part of an old password and bitcoin 1600.00. Disturbing, apparently there are sites that leak out passwords. Not an email you want to read while at lunch with your boss! I can laugh now, I believe it to be a hoax. I do love the guy above that said, “Please send me the video. I would like to post it to my Youtube channel with your email address. Not only will you be famous with law enforcement and Interpol but I will make a lot of money with all the people coming to visit my channel. Porn videos have made many people rich and famous and I want to become rich as soon as possible.” LOL!!!!

  27. Anonymous

    I googled my email address and found it with my password (the same one in the title of the email random). It was from Walmart.com. I know that I didn’t sign up for any sites. I do want to let some one know about this website that has a huge list of emails and passwords.

  28. Anonymous

    Received similar email this morning demanding $7000 in bitcoins as donation failing to do so will send my emails to my contacts which may lead to loss of reputation etc..

  29. Anonymous

    I also got a demand for 2200 bit coin from a so called porno site on my work computer. They too had an old password, but concerned me none the less. I plan to ignore it, but someone mentioned forwarding on to RCMP. Who and what is that??

  30. Anonymous

    The password is an easy one I used for a couple Asian dating sites. I new they seemed sketchy. Sure it is one of the fuck tards that works there or they are selling your info. I don’t even have a web cam so, jokes on them. Same email, stating they have video. Video of a dating site? No one would care if it were true… these guys know a password from a sketchy site you were on. That’s it. Hopefully you don’t use that password for any legit stuff!! I doubt they know anything more than what they grabbed off of that site. They are using the law of averages knowing that 1 out of 1000 will cave and send because they are stressed their wife and kids will find out. I’m single, no kids, family is all gone. No Facebook as they mentioned and that email is only used for crap accounts so, they would be forwarding to other porn and dating sites. I track my passwords for each site so, it was asiacharm.com. If you have been on there, that’s was it. Trust me. They know nothing but what you entered. Go delete your shit and change your pass. If they send you another one with the new pass. BINGO! Just internet pirates.

  31. Anonymous

    Received the same message but with a so called password that made no sense…not one of mine.
    The guys name was Oscar Wilkin. Wish there was a way to track down this asshole.

  32. Anonymous

    Received a very similar message today as well. Again, using an old password, demand of 7000$ worth of bitcoin..

    I’d say scam and fake blackmail is like everything else. When a method has been proven too old and inefficient, it means it has to change. Scam evolves over time and gets more intricate and refined. Here they bet on panic, mostly.
    When you receive an email with a header stating your password (even an old one), it peaks your interest and you will, exceptionally, open the email just to read through it. If the English is decent enough (which is quite rare in these scenarios), you will take it more seriously, etc.
    I guess I’ll just ignore it.

  33. Anonymous

    Same boat, same porn threat. I have never had a webcam on the computer, so people will enjoy that black screen of me doing nothing they can see or hear. Obviously they are hoping to scare a few folks into it, and I am sure they have. If they send out 100,000 of these, they are bound to get one person, which makes it well worth it on their end.

  34. Anonymous

    Got one today $7000 donation asked for otherwise in one day sex tape would be sent to all my outlook contacts . Claimed a sex tape( I am 69 .Get it up giggle) .Usurped my camera . Well there is not a camera on my server . The email was right but the password was old . Have not used it in ten years . Checked PNWED sight . My email has been in numerous breaches .Remember all these addresses are sold now they are being used
    I made the error to respond and said good luck
    deleted it . Bitlocker was one thing .this is Just a variation of the Nigerian scam .

  35. Anonymous

    Ignore them, with so many large companies being hacked, there are numerous Lists of emails and passwords on the dark web.. I got the same one, Password was one I hadn’t used in years, so clearly an old list they were working from.

    Recommendations to anyone who go it,

    1) If on outlook, set it up to only accept Emails in Plain text, not HTML, Rich text etc. Less chance of something nasty things being included in the email.

    2) If the password is one you are still using, change it.

    3) Don’t use a Computer with a built in camera when visiting porn sites……

    They should be ignored, as no more likely to be true than the junk postal mail saying you have been selected for a top prize.

    They will have sent these to maybe 250,000 people, if only 1% are foolish enough to fall for it at say 1,000, that’s 25,000 for 2 minutes work. Not bad business if you can get it.

    Ignore, stop watching porn, and change passwords. Sorted

  36. Anonymous

    I use a different password for each website that is low-security or that I don’t care about but yet demands that I use a password.

    he “password” in the copy of this spam that I got looks like it *could* be one of those throwaway passwords, but if it is then I don’t remember which website it was for. I’m guessing that they guessed.

  37. Anonymous

    I just received the same email. Based on everything I have seen here, it looks like nothing has happened to anyone. Can anyone confirm?

  38. Anonymous

    I received this email from a character calling himself Archie Rochester (cartoon criminal) at [email protected]. At 60 years old, I told him I don’t have $36, even less the $3600 in Bitcoin he was demanding, so I am kind of look forward to my 1st sex tape debut. I guess I’ll be getting the receipt fore mentioned by another responder for the purchase of porn, by someone else who responded to the threatening email. I never had to purchase it before,since I have my own dvd’s, but I admit, it wouldn’t be the worst thing I’ve ever done…. Sorry family & friends.

  39. Anonymous

    I receive a similar blackmail demand for $1000 in Bitcoin or else a webcam video of myself and a porn video would be emailed to all my business, friends and family.

    After reading the posts from other fraud attempt victims, I decided to ignore the email and report it to the FBI – I hope the author is severely punished. Here are my reasons for this decision:

    1. Webcam video – this threat was received by many people who had no webcam for covered the webcam.

    2. Porn video – this threat was received by many people that never visit porn sites.

    3. Old password – most passwords were very old and no longer used, so the security breach that exposed the password was not recent.

    4. So many people reporting the same blackmail – there are so many reports of the same blackmail scam that getting credible proof of porn site behavior for that many people is not believable.

    All in all, I do not think is a credible threat. Although it was excrutiating to receive this message, it was a big relief to read all these responses. Thanks to all who posted about this!!!!!!

  40. Anonymous

    I’ve received a couple of them…the latest one demanded 3000 dollars sent to a bitcoin site, or he would post videos of me watching porn…by split screen. How dumb are people? First off, if you are surfing porn. usually the only thing the web cam is capturing is your face only…so it’s just their word against yours, and really, people aren’t going to believe some foreign stranger over you. I am an old hacker, I know a lot of their tricks, but I also know things have changed. The one thing that has not changed in hackers is that most of them are super intelligent, but not very smart. They make boo boos…the last guy who sent me ransomware mistakenly sent the first one from his actual email address, then the subsequent ones from the fake address, and somehow he didn’t realize it. Unfortunately, he had to reformat his computer afterwards…lol. Besides, I haven’t been to a porn site in 20 years. Also, to their disappointment, I am an old retired dude…can’t be embarrassed, fired and I am not gonna give you any money. I am at the age where I don’t give a shit what you tape me doing…really….who cares??

  41. Anonymous

    I just received email today saying the same as all of the previous comments difference for me was no password attached just last 4 digits of my landline phone number! was on a porn site night before but I have no camera on computer and don’t access internet on mobile phone either get emails from optus telling me I owe money when I receive bills via mail ! im single not married don’t work anymore as well.only wanted $1000 usd from me!! just deleted it should I be worried about phone number ??

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