How to not get scammed through I know you are a pedophile scam

Also Known As: possible malware infections
Distribution: Moderate
Damage level: Medium

"I know you are a pedophile" removal guide

What is "I know you are a pedophile"?

"I know you are a pedophile" is a scam, an email that scammers use to swindle people out of their money. To achieve it, they claim that they have infected a computer with a remote access tool (RAT) which allowed them to record humiliating videos. They threaten to spread those videos if recipients will not send them a particular amount of cryptocurrency. We strongly advise not to trust this scam, none of the claims in it are true.

I know you are a pedophile spam campaign

According to scammers behind "I know you are a pedophile" scam, recipients have downloaded some software which installed a RAT on their computers. This RAT allowed scammers to access desktop, connected camera (or webcam), various files, passwords and contact lists. They claim that they have recorded four videos where recipients can be seen watching sexual videos that involve people who are under age. Scammers threaten to send these videos to family members, friends, colleagues and even the local police office if they will not receive $5000 in Bitcoin cryptocurrency in one week. However, as we mentioned in our introduction, "I know you are a pedophile" is just a typical scam. Emails of this type can never be trusted. If there is an email of this kind in the inbox or spam folder, it should be ignored and deleted.

We receive a great deal of feedback from concerned users about this type of 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 "I know you are a pedophile" email scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scammers claim that they have recorded humiliating videos and will spread them if they will not be paid in one week.
Ransom Size $5000 in Bitcoins
Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Address 3HdxVRvF48cdVunEpGXj2r5hqafsYG2nEH (Bitcoin)
Symptoms Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of one's 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.
Removal

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Other examples of email scams are "ChaosCC hacker group", "The last time you visited a Porn website", "Hacker who has access to your operating system". As a rule, scammers behind them claim that they have recorded some humiliating videos or took photos and threaten to spread them/send them to other people if they will not be paid a particular amount of money (typically, cryptocurrency). Either way, emails of this type should never be trusted. However, there are many cases where cyber criminals send emails that are used to distribute malware. They send emails with files attached to them that, if opened, install malicious programs like TrickBot, Hancitor, Emotet, FormBook and so on.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Downloads and installations of malware through emails happen only when people open website links or files that are included in them. In other words, these emails are harmless unless recipients open attached files or presented links. Typically, cyber criminals attach files such as Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript files, executable files like .exe, archives like ZIP, RAR, PDF documents and so on. For example, if attached file is a MS Office document, then, if opened, it will ask for a permission to enable macros command (to enable editing). Giving it such permission means allowing it to install high-risk malware. Either way, attached files cannot do any harm as long as they are unopened.

How to avoid installation of malware?

All software (and files) should be downloaded from official websites and via direct links. Third party downloaders, unofficial pages, Peer-to-Peer networks like torrent clients, eMule and other sources of this kind should not be trusted. They may be used as channels to distribute malicious software. Furthermore, it is not safe to use software 'cracking' tools to activate installed programs or operating systems. These tools can cause installation of malware, besides, it is not legal to activate programs with them. Installed software should be updated via tools or implemented functions that are designed by official software developers. Third party updaters often are designed to distribute malware or other unwanted software. If there is a MS Office suite installed on the computer but its verion is older than 2010, then we recommend to update it. Later versions include "Protected View" mode which prevents malicious documents from installing malicious software. Another effective way to keep a computer protected is to have a reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software installed on it and scan the system with such software regularly. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "I know you are a pedophile" email letter:

Yeah. I know you are a pedophile.
Actually I know way more about you than you think.

I am a computer scientist (internet security specialist) with affiliation with the Anonymous group.

Few months ago you downloaded an application.
That application had a special code implanted purposely.
Since the moment you installed it, your device started to act like a Remote Desktop I was able to access anytime.

The program allowed me to access your desktop, your camera(s), your files, passwords and contact lists. I also know where you live and where you work..


I was observing you for quite some time and what I have collected here is overwhelming.
I know about your sexual preferences and your interest in young bodies.

I have secured 4 video files clearly showing how you - (captured from your internet browser).
Glued together is a pretty overwhelming evidence that you are a pedophile.

The timestamps on the video files indicate the exact time you have been -:
1560855884.mp4 (121.4 MB)
1559037177.mp4 (106.4 MB)
1559318281.mp4 (22.8 MB)
1561307152.mp4 (98.9 MB)


I am not here to judge the morality of your sexual preferences, I am here to make money. Because I know you are a wealthy person and that you do care about your reputation, I am willing to give you a chance to atone and I will leave you alone.

You do know what Bitcoin is, right ?

You must fund a special address with 5,000 USD in Bitcoin, otherwise, I am going to se?d those video files to your family members, friends and your work buddies.

I know it may be time consuming to buy 5,000 USD in bitcoin, so I will give you exactly one week. Search on google 'how to buy bitcoin' and send it to me.
Enough is enough. I have seen enough..


If you do not send the bitcoins in one week, I will also feed those video recordings to your local police office. Your life will be ruined, trust me. Transfer details are below..

--------------------------------------------------------
Send exactly:
0.472074 BTC

to my bitcoin address:

3HdxVRvF48cdVunEpGXj2r5hqafsYG2nEH

(copy and paste)
--------------------------------------------------------

1 BTC is worth 10,485 USD right now, so send exactly: 0.472074 BTC.
Make sure the amount and address is copied correctly - this way I will know the transfer is coming from you.

As soon as you send bitcoins, I will remove the videos from my drive and remove the software allowing me to access your device.

If you do not cooperate, I will start sending out those videos to people you care about.
Not excluded that after sending to one person, I will ask 10x more from you. I can make you suffer, trust me.

Don't even think about going to police. If you try, I will immediately know it and I will feed them your -.


5,000 USD is a fair price for my Silence don't you think?

You have only one week & better act fast.

--------------------------------------------------------
Send exactly:
0.472074 BTC

to my bitcoin address:

3HdxVRvF48cdVunEpGXj2r5hqafsYG2nEH

(copy and paste)
--------------------------------------------------------


Do not reply to this email, it's an untraceable one time message.
I will contact you.

Remember, I am watching you.

Sp3ctr3 (N1ghTm4r3)

Instant automatic removal of possible malware infections: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of possible malware infections. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Spyhunter By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

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How to remove malware manually?

Manual malware removal is a complicated task, usually it's better to let antivirus or anti-malware programs do it automatically. To remove this malware we recommend using  Spyhunter for Windows. If you wish to remove malware manually, the first step is to identify the name of the malware that you are trying to remove. Here's an example of a suspicious program running on user's computer:

malicious process running on user's computer sample

If you checked the list of programs running on your computer, for example using task manager and identified a program that looks suspicious you should continue with these steps:

manual malware removal step 1 Download a program called Autoruns. This program shows auto-start applications, Registry and file system locations:

screenshot of autoruns application

manual malware removal step 2Restart your computer into Safe Mode:

Windows XP and Windows 7 users: Start your computer in Safe Mode. Click Start, click Shut Down, click Restart, click OK. During your computer start process, press the F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until you see the Windows Advanced Option menu, and then select Safe Mode with Networking from the list.

Safe Mode with Networking

Video showing how to start Windows 7 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 8 users: Start Windows 8 is Safe Mode with Networking - Go to Windows 8 Start Screen, type Advanced, in the search results select Settings. Click Advanced startup options, in the opened "General PC Settings" window, select Advanced startup. Click the "Restart now" button. Your computer will now restart into the "Advanced Startup options menu". Click the "Troubleshoot" button, and then click the "Advanced options" button. In the advanced option screen, click "Startup settings". Click the "Restart" button. Your PC will restart into the Startup Settings screen. Press F5 to boot in Safe Mode with Networking.

Windows 8 Safe Mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 8 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

Windows 10 users: Click the Windows logo and select the Power icon. In the opened menu click "Restart" while holding "Shift" button on your keyboard. In the "choose an option" window click on the "Troubleshoot", next select "Advanced options". In the advanced options menu select "Startup Settings" and click on the "Restart" button. In the following window you should click the "F5" button on your keyboard. This will restart your operating system in safe mode with networking.

windows 10 safe mode with networking

Video showing how to start Windows 10 in "Safe Mode with Networking":

 

manual malware removal step 3Extract the downloaded archive and run Autoruns.exe file.

extract autoruns.zip and run autoruns.exe

manual malware removal step 4In the Autoruns application click "Options" at the top and uncheck "Hide Empty Locations" and "Hide Windows Entries" options. After this procedure click the "Refresh" icon.

Click 'Options' at the top and uncheck 'Hide Empty Locations' and 'Hide Windows Entries' options

manual malware removal step 5Check the list provided by Autoruns application and locate the malware file that you want to eliminate.

You should write down it full path and name. Note that some malware hides their process names under legitimate Windows process names. At this stage it's very important to avoid removing system files. After you locate he suspicious program you want to remove right click your mouse over it's name and choose "Delete"

locate the malware file you want to remove

After removing the malware through Autoruns application (this ensures that the malware won't run automatically on the next system startup) you should search for the malware name on your computer. Be sure to enable hidden files and folders before proceeding. If you find the file of the malware be sure to remove it.

searching for malware file on your computer

Reboot your computer in normal mode. Following these steps should help remove any malware from your computer. Note that manual threat removal requires advanced computer skills, it's recommended to leave malware removal to antivirus and anti-malware programs. These steps might not work with advanced malware infections. As always it's better to avoid getting infected that try to remove malware afterwards. To keep your computer safe be sure to install latest operating system updates and use antivirus software.

To be sure your computer is free of malware infections we recommend scanning it with Spyhunter for Windows.

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 virus and spyware activity level today:

Medium threat activity
Medium

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

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possible malware infections QR code
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