A user seems to have fallen into the trap of an online ‘sextortion scam.’ The transaction was reported by Whale Alert which records a ~$1000 USD transfer made via Bitcoin to the scammer.
⚠️ A payment of 0.1115 #BTC (1,050 USD) was made to a confirmed Sextortion scam!
— Whale Alert (@whale_alert) June 22, 2020
According to a scam alert report, this is similar to ransomware except for hijacking the system, scammers are reported ‘recording compromising sexual videos of them.’ If the payment is not made, the blackmailers threaten to share the videos on the internet to friends and family.
Until now, 3 payments have been made to the same totalling 0.13636468 (the largest of which was made by the most recent transfer of 0.115 BTC).
How to Be Safe?
According to the data recording website bitcoinabuse.com, the scammers are usually ‘bluffing’ and waiting for victims to fall into their trap. In actuality, they rarely have any photos or videos of the user.
The scammers use old hacked websites or database leaks to obtain passwords and any other relevant information to convince the user of a breach. The report suggests that.
Sometimes the email will appear to be sent from your own email address. They will claim this as “proof” that they have hacked your computer and your email account. In fact, spoofing an email is trivial.
However, the actual threat might not be real since while it seems believable, to access webcams and photo or gallery without permission is a highly advanced task. The best way is to not respond to the e-mail and verify thoroughly on how they might have obtained the data they are using as leverage.
Users just refrain from the download apps or clicking on ‘fishy’ or untrusted website. Moreover, 2FA (2-factor authorization) for e-mail and social media websites and apps should be mandatory. Apart from this, users can check the background running apps on their desktop and mobile and remove all suspicious activities.
Last but not least, periodic password updates and refraining from saving the passwords digitally is important as well. Furthermore, the victims or people receiving such mail should report to cybercrime cell of their country and share the information on Reddit, Twitter or report to Bitcoinabuse to spread awareness.
Do you have any other information on how to protect oneself from these attacks? Please share your views with us.