Yet again, hackers strike with another scam, this time it being Sextortion as American media originally reported it a few months ago and it now seems to have also hit the UK and other countries worldwide. So let’s take it from the start and explain what Sextortion actually is which also now has a definition to it on Wikipedia.
Sextortion is a form of sexual exploitation that employs non-physical forms of coercion to extort sexual favors from the victim. Sextortion refers to the broad category of sexual exploitation in which abuse of power is the means of coercion, as well as to the category of sexual exploitation in which threatened release of sexual images or information is the means of coercion. Sextortion is an online crime that combines sex and extortion – the hackers/criminals claim to have hacked your devices and that they are in possessions of pictures or videos of yours in personal moments which they will release if their demands are not met. Such demands could be of monetary or other value. Unfortunately, this is not a new way of scamming people or a new hack – known as a remote access trojan (RAT) – and is not only technically possible and fairly easy but has been used in the past in a number of widely publicised attacks.
There are many different types of such scams out there, but this one seems to have gained some sort of “momentum” as it is now becoming more and more common, with police in several UK areas also reporting on the matter and advising potential victims. The scam was originally reported in Kansas,USA but has quickly spread worldwide to countries such as Australia, United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain, Czech Republic and Russia
Feel free to have a look at the example below:
The user, will effectively receive emails (usually coming from their own email address) that claim that a person has been filmed committing a sexual act on their own device or computer, or that they have been accessing pornographic sites. The hackers then attempt to blackmail the email address owner by claiming they will release the video, photos and another personal moments they have obtained via their hack to friends, family members and colleagues on social media hence creating fear to members of the public. It has also been reported in several cases that the hackers also demand payment via Bitcoin or another form of Crypto Currency possibly to hide the transaction and avoid being tracked by relevant cyber authorities.
Conclusively, if you end up being the recipient of such an email, simply update your password on the accounts you use the most and delete the email without clicking on any links it may contain or downloading any possible threatening attachments. You will then notice yourself that the frequency in which these emails were being sent to you will drop and eventually stop alltogether.
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