How to spot scams like We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site

Also Known As: We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site scam
Damage level: Medium

What kind of scam is "We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site"?

Recently, many scammers have been using the situation in Ukraine to trick people into sending them money or providing sensitive information. They are pretending to be legitimate organizations and ask for donations. We have analyzed this email and learned that scammers behind it use a certain scare tactic to trick recipients into transferring cryptocurrency.

We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site email scam

"We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site" email scam in detail

Scammers behind this email claim that they are Ukrainian hackers who have hacked a specific website (supposedly the one controlled by a recipient). They demand to support Ukraine by transferring 0.05 BTC to the provided crypto wallet. They also claim that a full-screen banner will appear on the "hacked" website if the donation is not made by the 25th of March.

This email must be ignored. All the things mentioned in it are not true. If you are willing to donate money to help Ukrainians, use legitimate websites. It is worth mentioning that some real organizations accept donations in cryptocurrency (it does not necessarily mean that it is a scam).

Threat Summary:
Name We Are Ukrainian Hackers And We Hacked Your Site Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim A website is hacked
Cyber Criminal Cryptowallet Address bc1q79tnp5ag2wzxyfrm8jvxtrnvqydr2ccxwwh7sf (Bitcoin)
Demanded Amount of Bitcoin 0.05 BTC
Distribution methods Deceptive emails
Damage Monetary loss
Malware Removal (Windows)

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Examples of similar scams

"Ukrainian Government Is Embracing Digital Assets Email Scam", "UN Ukraine Humanitarian Organization Email Scam", "Army Of Ukraine Need Your Support Email Scam" are examples of email scams used to trick recipients into sending money to scammers. It is worth noting that cybercriminals can use email as a tool to deliver malware.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Emails used to deliver malware contain malicious links or attachments. The purpose of these emails is to trick recipients into executing a malicious file, for example, MS Office, PDF document, executable, JavaScript file, extracting an archive file (and then them executing its contents). Such emails usually are disguised as legitimate/official letters too.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Do not trust irrelevant emails received from suspicious, unknown addresses. If an email of this kind contains a link or attachment, do not open it unless there is no reason to suspect that it may be malicious. Also, do not use unofficial pages, third-party downloaders, P2P networks, etc., as sources for downloading software (or files).

Download programs and files from legitimate/official websites. Update and activate already installed programs using tools provided by their official developers. Never use unofficial/third-party tools for that. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site" email letter:

Subject: *********: Your website ********* was hacked by Ukrainian hackers.

Hello. We are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site *********
What do we want? We want you to make a donation in support of Ukraine to this Bitcoin (BTC) wallet by March 25 in the amount of 0.05 BTC, this is a small amount: bc1q79tnp5ag2wzxyfrm8jvxtrnvqydr2ccxwwh7sf
If you do not make a donation, then a huge full-screen banner will appear on your site asking all visitors to your site to help Ukraine (your site will not be visible, only our banner), if you remove it, we will hang it again, if you fix the vulnerability, then we find a new one and hang the banner again.
As a last resort, we will have the domain name registrar block your domain permanently.

Screenshot of the French version of this email:

we are Ukrainian hackers and we hacked your site email scan french version

Text in this variant:

Subject: *********: Votre site Web ********* a ete pirate par des hackers ukrainiens.

Salut. Nous sommes des hackers ukrainiens et nous avons pirate votre site *********
Que voulons-nous? Nous souhaitons que vous fassiez un don en faveur de l'Ukraine a ce portefeuille Bitcoin (BTC) d'ici le 25 mars d'un montant de 0,05 BTC, il s'agit d'un petit montant : bc1q7y4g2shq8jpx0x8cy3tynagu88jprzdvr84ehw
Si vous ne faites pas de don, alors une enorme banniere plein ecran apparaitra sur votre site demandant a tous les visiteurs de votre site d'aider l'Ukraine (votre site ne sera pas visible, seulement notre banniere), si vous la supprimez, nous accrocherons recommencez, si vous corrigez la vulnerabilite, nous en trouvons une nouvelle et raccrochons la banniere.
En dernier recours, nous demanderons au bureau d'enregistrement de noms de domaine de bloquer votre domaine de maniere permanente.

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:
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Quick menu:

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.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why did I receive this email?

Typically, scammers use email addresses obtained after data breaches or obtain emails in other ways. Either way, they send the same email to all recipients (email scams are not personal).

Is my website actually hacked?

No, your website is not hacked. It is just a deceptive tactic used to scare recipients into transferring cryptocurrency to scammers.

I have sent cryptocurrency to the address presented in such email, can I get my money back?

Unfortunately, crypto transactions are virtually untraceable. Therefore, it is unlikely that you will get back the transferred funds.

Can an email be malicious?

Yes, it can contain a malicious file (attachment) or link. However, it cannot infect a computer directly. Computers get infected after malicious files are opened.

Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections that were present in email attachment?

Yes, Combo Cleaner will detect and eliminate almost all known malware. High-end malware can hide deep in the system. Therefore, a computer infected with malware of this kind must be scanned using a full system scan.

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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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Removal Instructions in other languages
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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