What is "I'm a programmer who cracked your email Scam"?
Like most spam campaigns, "I'm a programmer who cracked your email Scam" is used by cyber criminals who make threats and ransom demands. These messages generally state that they have stolen your personal data and recorded a compromising video or photograph of you.
They make threats stating that if you do not wish this material to be sent to all of your contacts, you must pay a ransom. This is a typical scam and there is no need for concern.
Frequently, cyber criminals send these emails to many people (potentially, thousands). According to the message, malicious code has been uploaded to your computer that allows cyber criminals to track your personal information (passwords, list of contacts, and so on).
They also state that they have installed a remote access tool and that they can monitor your activity. In this case, scammers claim that they have taken pictures of you while you were visiting "shocking" websites (presumably, pornographic).
It goes on to state that you must now pay $870 in Bitcoins, otherwise this material will be sent to your colleagues, relatives, and all other people on your contacts list. The deadline is 48 hours. According to "I'm a programmer who cracked your email Scam" developers, if you do not meet the demands, they will lock your computer and send the photos to your contacts.
Most scammers use identical tactics. We recommend that you simply ignore them and do not pay any ransom.
|Name||"I'm a programmer who cracked your email" spam campaign|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud|
|Fake Claim||Crooks falsely cliam that they've injected recipients system with a malware that captured compromising material (video) of the recipient. They also threaten to send the video to all recipient's contacts if a ransom is not paid.|
|Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Addresses||17XHRucfd4kx3W5ty7ySLGiKHqmPUUdpus, 1QHEbZG8NQT6vYCC8pyHvteNcmJ78B3ak3, 1PcFYw7PQKUnj6RxqVwZ4TFuwWUPTyECKQ, 1HNEU8CtrXzW3MDNPJpzFTwngRhLitb3rU, 1M2D1PzyyiZBrSh8qcdts5kecQAX3S9xuF, 12hBxZ7mzn3LgT3SjCsS6yS4tVefPBWCPt and many others.|
|Size Of Ransom||$600, $750, $870, $900 - price varies depending on campaign's variant.|
|Symptoms||Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.|
|Distribution methods||Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.|
|Damage||Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.|
|Malware Removal (Windows)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Other spam campaigns very similar to "I'm a programmer who cracked your email Scam" include Embed A Malware On The Web Page, Hacker Who Cracked Your Email And Device, and "Remote Control Desktop With A Key Logger". These are just some examples from many.
Most spam campaigns are used to trick people into paying cyber criminals, who claim to have embarrassing or compromising material. Despite this, not all scammers make ransom demands. Some send emails with malicious attachments and encourage people to open them.
The attachments are usually Microsoft Office documents such as Word, Excel, Power Point, and so on. Do not open these documents, since they proliferate high-risk viruses such as TrickBot, Adwind, FormBook, and other similar viruses. Viruses of this type might cause data loss or even financial issues.
They are often designed to gather people's personal information such as bank account details, passwords, logins, and so on. These actions can result in various problems relating to privacy, browsing safety, finances, and so on. These viruses might also open "backdoors" for other infections, such as ransomware-type viruses.
We receive a great deal of feedback from concerned users about this scam email. Here is the most popular question we receive:
Q: Hi pcrisk.com team, I received an email stating that my computer was hacked and they have a video of me. Now they are asking for a ransom in Bitcoins. I think this must be true because they listed my real name and password in the email. What should I do?
A: Do not worry about this email. Neither hackers nor cyber criminals have infiltrated/hacked your computer and there is no video of you watching pornography. Simply ignore the message and do not send any Bitcoins. Your email, name, and password was probably stolen from a compromised website such as Yahoo (these website breaches are common). If you are concerned, you can check if your accounts have been compromised by visiting haveibeenpwned website.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
Spam campaigns that proliferate malicious attachments generally use Microsoft Office documents. When opened, they ask users to enable macro commands, which then gives permission for malware to be downloaded and installed. This, however, only works with Microsoft Office.
If the attachment is opened using software other than Microsoft Office products, the virus will not infiltrate. Clearly, most spam campaigns target Windows users who use Microsoft Office. Users of other operating systems (or those who do not use Microsoft Office) are generally safe.
How to avoid installation of malware?
If you receive an email from an unknown/suspicious sender containing an irrelevant attachment, do not open it without first carefully studying the email. Download software using official and trustworthy sources only. Avoid using third party software downloaders and installers, since these are often monetized by promoting rogue applications.
Install software with care and check "Custom", "Advanced", and other similar settings. In some cases, software developers use the "bundling" method, thus potentially unwanted applications are hidden within download/installation settings. Therefore, update software using tools or implemented functions provided by official developers.
Fake software updaters should not be used, since they proliferate potentially unwanted, rogue applications. You are advised to use Microsoft Office 2010 or later. Older versions do not include "Protected View" mode, which prevents downloaded documents (malicious email attachments) from downloading and installing malware.
If you have already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the "I'm a programmer who cracked your email Scam" email message:
Subject: "email is compromised. Password must be changed" or "Security Alert. You account has been hacked."
I'm a programmer who cracked your email account and device about half year ago.
You entered a password on one of the insecure site you visited, and I catched it.
Of course you can will change your password, or already made it.
But it doesn't matter, my rat software update it every time.
Please don't try to contact me or find me, it is impossible, since I sent you an email from your email account.
Through your e-mail, I uploaded malicious code to your Operation System.
I saved all of your contacts with friends, colleagues, relatives and a complete history of visits to the Internet resources.
Also I installed a rat software on your device and long tome spying for you.
You are not my only victim, I usually lock devices and ask for a ransom.
But I was struck by the sites of intimate content that you very often visit.
I am in shock of your reach fantasies! Wow! I've never seen anything like this!
I did not even know that SUCH content could be so exciting!
So, when you had fun on intime sites (you know what I mean!)
I made screenshot with using my program from your camera of yours device.
After that, I jointed them to the content of the currently viewed site.
Will be funny when I send these photos to your contacts! And if your relatives see it?
BUT I'm sure you don't want it. I definitely would not want to ...
I will not do this if you pay me a little amount.
I think $870 is a nice price for it!
I accept only Bitcoins.
My BTC wallet: 17XHRucfd4kx3W5ty7ySLGiKHqmPUUdpus, 1QHEbZG8NQT6vYCC8pyHvteNcmJ78B3ak3, 1PcFYw7PQKUnj6RxqVwZ4TFuwWUPTyECKQ, 1HNEU8CtrXzW3MDNPJpzFTwngRhLitb3rU, 1M2D1PzyyiZBrSh8qcdts5kecQAX3S9xuF, 12hBxZ7mzn3LgT3SjCsS6yS4tVefPBWCPt, 1AHNN4tkuKiEjbMVnMzkndcqC3a9pveR57
If you have difficulty with this - Ask Google "how to make a payment on a bitcoin wallet". It's easy.
After receiving the above amount, all your data will be immediately removed automatically.
My virus will also will be destroy itself from your operating system.
My Trojan have auto alert, after this email is looked, I will be know it!
You have 2 days (48 hours) for make a payment.
If this does not happen - all your contacts will get crazy shots with your dirty life!
And so that you do not obstruct me, your device will be locked (also after 48 hours)
Do not take this frivolously! This is the last warning!
Various security services or antiviruses won't help you for sure (I have already collected all your data).
Here are the recommendations of a professional:
Antiviruses do not help against modern malicious code. Just do not enter your passwords on unsafe sites!
I hope you will be prudent.
Another variant of "I'm A Programmer Who Cracked Your" scam email:
Text presented within (cyber criminals use letter-look-alike characters to bypass email spam filters):
Subject: Your opérating systém has béen hackéd by cybércriminals. Changé thé authorization méthod.
I'm a programmér who crackéd your émail account and dévicé about half yéar ago.
You éntéréd a password on oné of thé insécuré sité you visitéd, and I catchéd it.
Of coursé you can will changé your password, or alréady madé it.
But it doésn't mattér, my rat softwaré updaté it évéry timé.
Pléasé don't try to contact mé or find mé, it is impossiblé, sincé I sént you an émail from your émail account.
Through your é-mail, I uploadéd malicious codé to your Opération Systém.
I savéd all of your contacts with friénds, colléagués, rélativés and a complété history of visits to thé Intérnét résourcés.
Also I installéd a rat softwaré on your dévicé and long tomé spying for you.
You aré not my only victim, I usually lock dévicés and ask for a ransom.
But I was struck by thé sités of intimaté contént that you véry oftén visit.
I am in shock of your réach fantasiés! Wow! I'vé névér séén anything liké this!
I did not évén know that SUCH contént could bé so éxciting!
So, whén you had marturbate on intimé sités (you know what I méan!)
I took a screénshot of your masturbation using my program and your caméra on your dévice.
Aftér that, I jointéd thém to thé contént of thé curréntly viéwéd sité.
Will bé funny whén I sénd thésé photos to your contacts! And if your rélativés séé it?
BUT I'm suré you don't want it. I définitély would not want to ...
I will not do this if you pay mé a littlé amount.
I think $985 is a nicé pricé for it!
I accépt only Bitcoins.
My BTC wallét: 16KfJgmrHrKWS54EjTzgYa3cTmHM8QGHyw
If you havé difficulty with this - Ask Googlé "how to maké a paymént on a bitcoin wallét". It's éasy.
Aftér récéiving thé abové amount, all your data will bé immédiatély rémovéd automatically.
My virus will also will bé déstroy itsélf from your opérating systém.
My Trojan havé auto alért, aftér this émail is lookéd, I will bé know it!
You havé 2 days (48 hours) for maké a paymént.
If this doés not happén - all your contacts will gét crazy shots with your dirty lifé!
And so that you do not obstruct mé, your dévicé will bé lockéd (also aftér 48 hours)
Do not také this frivolously! This is thé last warning!
Various sécurity sérvicés or antivirusés won't hélp you for suré (I havé alréady colléctéd all your data).
Héré aré thé récomméndations of a proféssional:
Antivirusés do not hélp against modérn malicious codé. Just do not éntér your passwords on unsafé sités!
I hopé you will bé prudént.
Instant automatic malware removal:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is I'm A Programmer Who Cracked Your Email spam?
- Types of malicious emails.
- How to spot a malicious email?
- What to do if you fell for an email scam?
Types of malicious emails:
Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.
Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.
After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.
Emails with Malicious Attachments
Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.
In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.
If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.
While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.
This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.
To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.
How to spot a malicious email?
While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:
- Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
- Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
- Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
- Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.
To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
Example of a spam email:
What to do if you fell for an email scam?
- If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
- If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
- If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
- If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
- Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.