They say the classics always come back. In cybersecurity, the truth is that cybercriminals’ techniques vary; However, when you find something that works to scam the user, why change it? Recently, the National Cybersecurity Institute (Incibe)
has alerted on a new malicious email campaign in which criminals threaten to publish alleged intimate recordings of the Internet user. The goal is to trick you into paying a sum of money in the form of cryptocurrencies.
This type of scam, known as ‘sextortion’, has been common on the Internet for some time. Only between January and February, the cybersecurity company Avast detected 36,759 attacks in Spain. As usual, in the campaign shared by Incibe, the cybercriminal explains in the email that he has obtained these alleged intimate images thanks to a ‘hack’ that never really took place.
«If you have received an email of this style, do not reply and delete it. Nobody has had access to your devices, nor has they recorded an intimate video. It is a deception that uses social engineering strategies so that you follow the indications of the cybercriminal “, they explain from the institution.
This is how the scam works
The fraudulent email is sent from a possibly randomly generated email account. The subject includes: ‘I successfully hacked your XXX devices’. “XXX are random numbers, although it is not ruled out that there are other emails with similar subjects” they point out from Incibe.
The body of the message is written in Spanish “And, although there are no spelling mistakes, the grammar and vocabulary are not those used by a native person, possibly derived from a translation from another language.” In the text, in effect, it is explained to the victim that their device has been infected with spyware with which they have obtained alleged intimate videos. Cybercriminals threaten to spread these videos among the contacts of the recipient of the email, unless they make a payment in cryptocurrency equivalent to 500 euros within 60 hours.
“The objective of this short period of time is to prevent the victim from stopping to think and analyze what is happening, and make the payment as soon as possible due to the fear of thinking that said compromised material could be distributed”, they stand out from the institution. Likewise, it is not ruled out that other different messages may appear, but with the same purpose. In the event of receiving a message of this type, the user must not comply with the cybercriminal’s conditions. Rather, it has to delete the mail and do not reply to it.