Prevent financial loss caused through the ChaosCC Hacker Group email scam

Also Known As: ChaosCC Hacker Group spam
Damage level: Medium

What is "ChaosCC hacker group"?

"ChaosCC hacker group" is the name of an email scam. Criminals use it to extort money from unsuspecting people by threatening to distribute a compromising video unless a specific sum of money is paid within 60 hours. This is a typical scam and should not be trusted.

Scammers send these emails hoping that some users will take them seriously and pay to prevent distribution of compromising photos, videos (and other materials) that do not even exist.

ChaosCC hacker group spam campaign

In this case, the scammer presents him/herself as a representative of the ChaosCC hacker group and claims that the recipient's email account has been hacked. It is also claimed that the hacked account was used to infect the operating system with malicious software, which allowed access to messaging applications and the webcam.

According to this scammer, the recipient's webcam was used to record a video of the victim whilst visiting an adult website. The scammer states that the recorded video will be distributed by sending it to all contacts in the recipient's messaging applications, unless $700 (in Bitcoin) is received within 60 hours of receiving the email.

The scammer promises to delete the video after the transaction is made. As mentioned, this is merely a scam. The cyber criminals responsible have not hacked email or messaging accounts, recorded any video, or have access to the webcam. These criminals send emails to many people and hope that a proportion will fall for the scam.

Unfortunately, some people have yet to learn about these scams and pay the scammers (typically, via a cryptocurrency). We strongly recommend that you ignore "ChaosCC hacker group" and other email scams.

We receive a great deal of feedback from concerned users about this email scam. Here is the most popular question we receive (in this case, relating to a scam that claims to have obtained compromising videos or photos of the user):

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 the haveibeenpwned website.

Threat Summary:
Name ChaosCC Hacker Group Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scammers claim that they have hacked an email account, infected a computer, and recorded a 'humiliating video', and that they will spread the video unless they are be paid within 60 hours
Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Address 1KE1EqyKLPzLWQ3BhRz2g1MHh5nws2TRk
Size of Ransom $700 in Bitcoin
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)

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Examples of other email scams are "The last time you visited a Porn website", "Hacker who has access to your operating system", and "You certainly do not know me". Typically, scammers use emails of this kind to trick people into paying for videos and photos that do not exist. In fact, many spam campaigns are sent to infect computers with malware.

The emails contain malicious attachments or web links that lead to them. The main goal is to trick people into opening the attachments, which then install high-risk malware. Some examples of malicious programs that cyber criminals proliferate through emails are TrickBot, Hancitor, Emotet, and FormBook.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Cyber criminals send emails that contain various attachments. They present these emails (and attached files) as important, official, and so on, and hope that recipients open them. Typically, they attach files such as Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript files, executable files such as .exe, archive files (ZIP, RAR and others), PDF documents, and so on.

When opened, these attachments/files start the installation process of malware. For example, if the attached file is a MS Office document, it will demand permission to enable editing/content (macros commands). If this is granted, the document infects the computer with malicious software. In any case, note that attached files cannot cause installation of malware unless they opened.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Do not open files that are attached to irrelevant, suspicious emails. The same applies to files that are presented in emails received from suspicious, unknown addresses. Download software through direct download links and from trustworthy, official websites.

Do use any third party downloaders, installers, Peer-to-Peer networks such as torrent clients, eMule or other dubious sources/tools. Update installed software with tools or implemented functions that are provided by official software developers. Third party (fake/unofficial) updaters cannot be trusted.

Do not activate programs through 'cracking' tools, since this is illegal and often causes installation of malware. Use Microsoft Office 2010 or later - these versions have "Protected View" mode, which prevents documents from installing malicious programs. Scan the operating system with reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software regularly.

This will detect threats, which should then be removed immediately. 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 "ChaosCC hacker group" email message:


I am a representative of the ChaosCC hacker group.
In the period from 03/06/2019 to 25/08/2019 we got access to your account by hacking one of the mail servers.

You already changed the password?
Sumptuously! But my program fixes this every time. And every time I know your new password!

Using access to your account, it turned out to be easy to infect the OS of your device.

At the moment, all your contacts are known to us. We also have access to your messengers and to your correspondence.
All this information is already stored with us.

We are also aware of your intimate adventures on the Internet.
We know that you adore adult sites and we know about your sexual addictions.
You have a very interesting and special taste (you understand what I mean).

While browsing these sites, your device's camera automatically turns on.
Video-record you and what you watch is being save.
After that, the video clip is automatically saved on our server.

At the moment, several analogy video records have been collected.
From the moment you read this letter, after 60 hours,
all your contacts on this email box and in your instant messengers will receive these clips and files with your correspondence.

If you do not want this, transfer 700$ to our Bitcoin cryptocurrency wallet: 1KE1EqyKLPzLWQ3BhRz2g1MHh5nws2TRk, 1EbJGYEfMvH9fdMrohwNsa3fyqwyMM6eaa, 32KrteYfpSvNYBRXn1KfmPnsc2KUmoi4JV, 3BTJgPA8tSBAdao9E7yabDBa16oSqAzNt4, 3LuGuAXuycmpDFyumPbkdgqTdA2wUBhceB, 3BsSv1ieSQ6FQnS1JUhWDiZ4SZmVXi6Yj1, 15178QQtWpx154LvTMzLSGEhqgsKs9CKdn
I guarantee that we will then destroy all your secrets!

As soon as the money is in our account - your data will be immediately destroyed!
If no money arrives, files with video and correspondence will be sent to all your contacts.

You decide... Pay or live in hell out of shame...

We believe that this whole story will teach you how to use gadgets properly!
Everyone loves adult sites, you're just out of luck.
For the future - just cover a sticker your device's camera when you visit adult sites!

Take care of yourself!

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Types of malicious emails:

Phishing email icon Phishing 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.

Email-virus icon 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.

Sextortion email icon Sextortion Emails

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:

Example of an email spam

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.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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