Do not trust the I Do Know Your Passwords email scam

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

"I Do Know Your Passwords" removal guide

What is "I Do Know Your Passwords"?

"I Do Know Your Passwords" is one of the many email scams that are used to obtain money from recipients by deception. In this particular email scammers claim that they have recorded a compromising video which they will spread if recipients will not pay them $1000 in Bitcoins. Note, all claims in emails of this kind are not true and should not be taken seriously. We strongly recommend to ignore emails of this kind and delete them from the Inbox as soon as possible.

I Do Know Your Passwords spam campaign

Scammer behind this email claims that he knows recipient's passwords and what he does on while browsing the Internet. To be more precise, he claims that he infected a computer with malware through some adult website which recipient has visited before receiving this letter. Installed malware supposedly allowed this scammer to access recipient's screen and camera and collect contact lists from Facebook, Messenger and email accounts. He claims that he has recorded a double screen video where a recipient can be seen watching some adult video. Scammer threatens to send this video to all collected contacts if he will not receive $1000 in Bitcoins. To avoid spam filters, scammer spreads this scam by writing it in a password-protected PDF documents and attaching it to an email. Anti-virus suites or other virus detection engines cannot scan password-detected documents that is why email scams like this one are not categorized as spam and recipients receive them to their Inbox (not Spam) folders. Typically, passwords for password-protected documents like this PDF document are provided in the email messages. Either way, none of these email scams can be trusted and should be deleted from any folder.

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 Do Know Your Passwords" Sextortion Email Scam (PDF)
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scammer claims that he has infected a computer with malware which allowed him to record compromising/humiliating video.
Malicious Attachment murka111.pdf - password-protected PDF document
Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Address 13ajfLBScsUNSJ3t65fsCmT1TRkQCUMYA1
Ransom Size $1000 in Bitcoins
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

To eliminate possible malware infections our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
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Free scanner checks if your computer is infected. To remove malware, you have to purchase the full version of Spyhunter.

There are many other email scams out there, some examples are "I know you are a pedophile", "ChaosCC hacker group" and "The last time you visited a Porn website". As a rule, scammers send them with a purpose to trick people into believing that there is some humiliating video recorded (or photo taken) which will be sent to other people if they will not pay scammer a particular amount of money (typically, cryptocurrency). Unfortunately, cyber criminals use emails to spread malware as well. They attach some file and hope that recipients will open it. If opened, it installs malicious software like TrickBot, LokiBot, Emotet, FormBook, or some other high-risk malware.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Spam campaigns/emails are used to distribute malware through files that are attached to them. It means that these files cannot infect computers if recipients do not open them. However, if they do, then they allow for malicious files to install one or another malicious software. Examples of files that can be used to proliferate malware are Microsoft Office or PDF documents, executable files like .exe, JavaScript files, archives like ZIP, RAR and so on. For instance, if the attached file is a Microsoft Office document, then, when opened, it will ask for a permission to enable macros commands. In other words, to enable editing. Once a malicious document gets such permission, it installs malware.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Attachments (or web links) that are included in irrelevant emails that are received from unknown/suspicious addresses should not be opened. As a rule, scammers/cyber criminals disguise these files and/or emails as important and official. Files should not be downloaded from unofficial, questionable websites, sources like Peer-to-Peer networks, third party downloaders, or programs installed through third party installers. The safest way to download everything is to use official websites and direct links. Installed programs should be activated and updated properly, third party/unofficial tools may be used to distribute malware and infect computers with high-risk malicious software. Besides, it is not legal to activate paid software using various 'cracking' tools. Downloaded MS Office documents should be opened with Office 2010 or later version, they include "Protected View" mode which prevents malicious documents from installing unwanted, malicious software. One more way to protect a system is to regularly scan it with a reputable anti-virus or anti-spyware software and eliminate detected threats as soon as possible. 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 password-protected PDF document which is attached to "I Do Know Your Passwords" email scam:

Hello,  
I do know your passwords (check this email subject for one of the passwords), I do know about your daily life, I do know about your internet activities but you do not know anything about me, and you must be wondering why you are getting this email, right? I installed a malware on the adult (porn) website and guess what, you visited this website to have fun (you know what I mean!). While you were watching the porn, your web browser started functioning as an RDP+keylogger, which gave me access to your display screen and camera. Right after that, my software collected all of your contacts from your Facebook account, Messenger account, and email account, then, I created a double screen video. The first part shows the video you were watching (you have a nice taste lol), and the second part shows the recording of your camera (it is you!).  
You have two options -   
1. First option is to ignore this email. In this case, I will send the recorded video clip of yours to all of your contacts and just imagine the humiliation you will feel from this. Don't forget that this can also affect your relationship as well.   
2. Second option is to pay me $1000. We will call it a donation. In this case, I will right away delete your video and all of your information I have about you (including your contact lists) and you will never hear from me again. You can continue your daily life like this never happened.   
You will make the payment via Bitcoin. If you do not know about Bitcoin, search Google for "how to buy bitcoin". You can also get the Bitcoin from sites like Bitstamp, Coinbase, Kraken, Localbitcoins, etc.  
Bitcoin (i.e. BTC) address to which you need to send is -  
 13ajfLBScsUNSJ3t65fsCmT1TRkQCUMYA1, 1FGR4QEoNneYMN4FMSHykqzGuqWsVmKvJ
It is Case-Sensitive, so make sure to copy and paste it, or, you can also scan this QR image to get the BTC address:  
 
If you are thinking to go to the police, good luck, I have taken every step to make sure that this email cannot be traced back to me. You have 48 hours to pay me. I have a special Facebook pixel in this email, and at this moment, I know that you have read this email. If you want proof, reply to this email, and I will send your video to 4 of your contacts.

Screenshot of the email:

I Do Know Your Passwords Sextortion email

Text presented in it:

Pass-word: 4534

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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