It will send an immediate scare through you at first, but beware it is just a scam! Fraudsters are sending emails and letters to people claiming to have uncovered something about you that will cause embarrassment or shame. In some cases, the fraudster will claim to have access to your passwords including your email password and your list of contacts. The scammer will threaten to share this embarrassing “secret” with your family, friends, coworkers and employer unless you pay up.
“This type of scam can take your breath away at first, you’ll scan your memory to identify anything this person might possibly have to blackmail you with,” said CSLEA Foundation Kenny Ehrman. “The person is going to demand payment, possibly in bitcoin or some kind of gift or money card. Don’t do it.”
What should you do if you receive an email like this?
- Don’t respond
- Delete it
- If concerned, change your passwords
- Consider filing a report with the FBI at www.ic3.gov.