Did you get an extortion email?

ISeek would like to advise our customers of a new type of scam email – extortion emails, which attempt to blackmail recipients by claiming they have personal and sensitive information on them, and offer “proof” by providing some login details that were harvested in previous data breaches. Ransom is usually demanded in digital currency, like bitcoin.

These emails all follow a very similar format:
  1. Claim to have hacked your email and computer.
  2. They include a password.
  3. They tell you they infected your computer with a trojan virus
  4. They lie saying you got the virus while looking at an adult website
  5. They demand a payment with bitcoin
  6. Finally, they give you a very short deadline to pay and claim if you do not they will send all your private personal data to friends and family.

 

These emails are a scam.

It is a very clever scam. Recipients of these emails may feel coerced into paying the ransom. This is because the password referenced in the email was in fact one that they had previously used in an online account and that was tied to their email addressWith the increase in big data breaches, billions of email addresses and passwords are indexed on the dark web and this is where cyber-criminals would have accessed them. Two good examples that might affect our customers were Linkedin in 2016 and Dropbox in 2012.

What action to take?

  • First – Never reply to an email like this.
  • If the password they quote is your current email password – change it immediatelyand change anywhere else you use that password.
  • If it is an old password you no longer use anywhere you do not need to take any action.
  • If you are unsure of your email password and iSeek host your email please ask us to change your password.
Remember iSeek are here to help you.
We want our customers to stay safe and we are here to help you with your website or email, if you want our help contact us at  support@iseek.ie
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