Computer users around the world have begunreceive emails from scammers who extort money. Depending on who sent the letter, its contents may vary. However, colleagues from Business Insider managed to highlight common features in the letters of scammers and find a way to protect themselves from them.
Typically, new scam emails contain the following information:
- Your password that you have ever used.
- The information that this password was used to hack into a computer, install malware on it and track it through a webcam.
- Threat to provide webcam recording and historyvisits to adult sites to relatives, friends and other contacts in case of non-payment of funds in bitcoin in the amount of about 1200-1600 dollars.
Such a letter can really scare, soas one of your passwords with a high probability of leaks at the time of security problems of some popular service. But the truth is that most likely, scammers do not have access to your webcam and contacts. Most likely, they only have one of your passwords and an email address. Of course, if you do not use the same password for different services, which is strongly discouraged.
Bleeping Computer report somefraudsters have already earned more than 50 thousand dollars in this way. These data are based on the analysis of bitcoin wallets. But security experts believe that most likely you have nothing to worry about. Fraudsters are not targeted specifically at you, and mailing is automated. Here's what Brian Krebs, a leading security journalist, has to say about the situation:
I guess the scammer created some kind ofa script that uses usernames and passwords leaked from a popular website several years ago, and that every victim who received the email used the same email address to enter the hacked website.
Really looks like scammersuse very old passwords. Perhaps the victims have not been using them for several years. In order not to be afraid of scammers, you need to use different long and secure passwords. To simplify the work with them, there are special password managers.