Exercise extreme caution if you receive an email with the subject line “I have a piece of information that will likely get your attention.”
This email is a form of sextortion orchestrated by cybercriminals and internet fraudsters, and it’s vital to understand their tactics to protect yourself.
In these emails, scammers typically claim to possess sensitive information about the recipient and threaten to expose it to the recipient’s coworkers, family, relatives, and others unless a specific amount of money is paid.
Important Note: Any information they claim to have, such as a few passwords or your desktop name, likely came from a previously leaked database rather than from any supposed “malware” they installed to track you.
Their primary objective is to create fear and pressure you into complying with their demands, which usually involve sending Bitcoin to a specified address.
Image of the email:
Transcript of the email in text:
Hello. I have a piece of information that will likely get your attention.
On 9/9/2023 08:43:27
, I breached the security of your device’s operating system and gained complete access to your account, “Jcron
“. For a long time now, I’ve been closely observing you.
I’ve established software on your system that lets me manage all your devices.
The malware I installed grants me access to all your device controllers (microphone, video camera, keyboard, display). I have uploaded all your information, data, photos, and browsing history to my servers. I also have access to all your messengers, social networks, emails, synced data, chat histories, and contact lists.
I must say, I’ve learned quite a bit about you!
I pondered on the possibilities that this data presented…
Recently, I’ve conceptualized a captivating idea: to employ AI technology to produce a split-screen video where one side showcases you doing ********** and the other side portrays your web browsing activities. Such video styles are trending at the moment!
Honestly, I was shocked at what I was able to put together.
With a single click, I can distribute this video to all your contacts through email, social networks, and instant messengers. Furthermore, I could expose access to all the emails and messaging apps you use.
Additionally, I found a plethora of intriguing materials that I could disseminate online and share with friends.
If you would prefer that I not do it, transfer 800 $ (US dollar) to my Bitcoin wallet.
bc1qjnjcv0f9cpr5ssap2rv2s40296378xvrjug2v9 **Scammer’s Wallet Address**
If you’re unsure about how to replenish a Bitcoin wallet, I suggest using Google. It’s not difficult at all.
As soon as the funds are received, I’ll notice it immediately and remove all the unwanted material. After that, we’ll part ways. I also commit to deactivating and removing all malware from your devices. You can trust me, I stand by my word. It’s a fair deal, especially considering the time I’ve invested in tracking your profile and traffic
You have exactly two days (48 hours) from the time this letter is opened to make the payment.
After this period, if I don’t receive the specified amount from you, I’ll distribute access to your accounts, visited sites, personal data, and edited videos to everyone, without any warning.
Trust me, I don’t make mistakes. I wouldn’t recommend joking around with me because I have a lot of options at my disposal.
There’s no use reporting me because they won’t be able to locate me. Formatting the drive or destroying your device won’t help because I already possess your data.
Replying to this message is futile – I didn’t use a personal email to send it and I won’t be checking for responses.
Best of luck, and don’t take it too personally!
We all have our own racket, and yours just collided with mine today.
PS Moving forward, I suggest you abide by internet security guidelines and avoid dodgy websites.
How to protect yourself against these emails
Not falling for scams is crucial. But understanding how to safeguard yourself matters even more.
If you’ve unintentionally clicked a link or interacted with scammers, what’s your next move? Safeguarding your personal data and finances should be your utmost concern.
It is our mission to protect and inform users of the dangers of the internet. This is why below, we’ve gathered steps and methods that will help you when encountering malicious emails.
Enable two-factor authentication on all accounts
Two-factor authentication (2FA) adds an extra security layer to logins by requiring additional verification steps especially when accessing an account from a new device.
Think of it like entering a bar: first, one bouncer lets you in, and then another bouncer inside asks for more information before granting access.
Similarly, 2FA ensures that even if someone gets your login details, they can’t access your account without an extra verification step.
Using two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security. The platform usually asks for a verification code sent to your phone. Some platforms even let you use biometrics like facial recognition or fingerprint scans for added safety.
2FA is crucial for all accounts, safeguarding your identity and preventing unauthorized access, regardless of the account’s contents. Your account represents you, and it’s vital to keep strangers out. Only the true owner should have access, proven during login.
Two-factor authentication isn’t just for new device logins; it’s also used in situations requiring confirmation of the account owner’s actions. To enable 2FA, check the Settings section of the platform or website you’re using.
Use an antivirus program for better protection
While built-in systems like Windows Defender and Mac system software can block a lot of malware, they cannot detect all online threats. This is important because malicious emails often carry malicious attachments that pose as documents or files.
When executed, these attachments load malware onto your computer. Malware attacks are concerning as they put both your logged-in data and saved login information at risk, along with important files.
Although Windows Defender is strong, its creator, Microsoft does not solely focus on antivirus and overall cybersecurity. Especially in the case of serious malware attacks triggered by email attachments, dedicated malware-detecting software is essential.
While some argue that Windows Defender combined with common sense is enough to protect against malware, it’s important to recognize that not everyone is tech-savvy. Every user has important accounts requiring protection, regardless of their level of expertise.
A variety of antivirus programs are available, giving you options to choose what suits you best. Some are great at scanning, use fewer hardware resources, or excel at removing malware effectively. Research to find the antivirus that matches your daily computer needs.
Choosing the best antivirus can be intricate due to diverse user needs and ongoing debates. We’re not taking sides here; your choice matters most based on how you use your device.
Think before you click
It’s a common piece of advice, but it’s worth emphasizing: take a moment to think before acting. Whether you believe it or not, this simple pause can save you from potential harm.
Your instincts play a crucial role in your online safety. They might raise red flags when you encounter certain emails or attachments.
If you have a gut feeling that something’s not right, trust that instinct and give yourself a brief pause. This extra step can be the barrier between falling for a scam and protecting your information.
The consequences of clicking on suspicious links can be severe. Malicious software, often hidden in the background, can infiltrate your system and compromise your security.
What seems like a harmless click can lead to personal data breaches, financial loss, or even the control of your device by hackers.
Report the scam to prevent others from falling victim
The most important step now is reporting the scam. You’ve done well by avoiding the scam through your research and finding this information.
Remember, the next person might not be so lucky and could end up being a victim. This could result in significant financial loss and a long recovery process. You can prevent this by reporting the scam.
Your actions can protect others from falling into these traps. Reporting the scam might seem small, but it has a big impact.
When you report the scam, you help authorities track down the people behind these fraudulent emails. We’ve put together a list of where to report online scams, including organizations from different countries dedicated to fighting these frauds.
To make your report more effective, give the authorities complete details of the scam you have encountered. Share everything you know about it with the appropriate authorities and let them act on it.
Now that you’re informed about the “I have a piece of information that will likely get your attention” scam and malicious emails in general, remember to steer clear of suspicious messages and report them to authorities.
Doing this can help stop scams in their tracks, and these online fraudsters will be discouraged from making these deceptive emails. Byte-Size Onion wishes you a safe online experience and a great day ahead.