I got this email today. What to do? Millions — perhaps billions — of similar emails have been sent over the years, but there seems to have been a flood of them over the past few months. Very few people ever make the requested payment.
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You probably got to this page from a search like ransom email bitcoin password. I don't usually write about email except how to re-engage customers or email mistakes but here's my story. I wish you could have been there. The message said this person had hacked my computer and installed a remote tracking application. At first I laughed and then I stared at that password in the subject line. It was an old password, but still
Here's an example of that email:. The scammer, having thoroughly scared you, then threatens to release evidence of you using adult websites unless you pay a ransom, usually in Bitcoin. The first and most important piece of advice is check if the password the scammer is quoting is still current anywhere, and if so, to change that password immediately anywhere you use it. You can check them with the password tool on the Have I Been Pwnd website. Chances are it has been compromised at some point, so if it has and you have a lot of online accounts — online stores, banking, memberships etc — registered to that email account, check that the passwords for those are strong and recent. The reason for that is if you use the same email address and password with lots of different accounts, a hacker could get into all of those using those login details. Most of these have a free and a paid-for option, and most will have apps and browser extensions so that you can use them on all your devices — your laptop, your mobile, your tablet or your Chromebook. Try not to panic. Someone who really did have evidence of you doing something unsavoury would probably send you a screengrab or similar to convince you and scare you further.
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