The FBI issued a warning about scammers trying to blackmail supposedly cheating husbands for Bitcoin.
One of the hallmarks of cryptocurrency is being able to make payments across borders to anybody in the world quickly. Of course, that ease of use can also be harnessed for nefarious purposes, such as hacking, scamming, and extortion attempts. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued a warning about a new extortion scam that targets supposedly cheating husbands.
Extortionists are always looking for ways to scam money off of people. The reality is that Bitcoin and other virtual currencies allow them a quick and easy way to siphon funds from victims. A new scam being perpetuated is a husband receiving a communication that demands a payoff in Bitcoin or else his wife will be told of his philandering ways.
The FBI has issued a warning about this type of scam. They note that the scam begins with an email or letter that contains detailed personal information, such as the husband’s name, address, username, and password.
The extortionist then accuses the husband of being unfaithful to his wife, visiting pornographic websites, and other unsavory acts. The FBI notes that the extortion letter usually contains phrases like “I installed malware on the adult video site” or “I stumbled across your misadventures.”
The thrust of the extortion letter is that unless the husband pays a blackmail in bitcoins, a video or proof of the husband’s misdeeds will be sent to his family, job, friends, or social network contacts.
The FBI says that such extortion attempts are common when news of a recent online security breach comes out. They say to ignore such demands and not to open emails or attachments from sources you do not know. (In other words, basic common sense stuff.) The FBI also says that there has been an increase in such extortion attempts recently that have been reported to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).
It seems that cryptocurrency-related scams can be found everywhere today. Just a week ago, a Finnish man reported that he was scammed out of over 5,000 bitcoins by an investment venture group in Thailand.
Recently, a company in South Korea was raided by police after claiming to have located a lost Russian warship. The ship supposedly contained 200 tons of gold when it sunk, and the company planned on issuing cryptocurrency linked to the supposed gold cargo, which was to be salvaged.
Cryptocurrency scams are commonplace on Twitter. Security researchers revealed that they found over 15,000 Twitter bots pushing crypto scams. Not to be outdone, it’s been reported that almost $100 million has been lost to ICO exit scams so far.
Overall, Kaspersky Lab reports that crypto scammers managed to steal over $2.3 million in the second quarter of 2018. All of this just goes to show that you always need to be aware of potential scams and thoroughly research any company or project you may become involved in.
Have you ever fallen prey to a cryptocurrency scam? Let us know in the comments below.
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