ESET cybersecurity specialist is alerting Internet users to a fraud scheme that has been growing lately, with the aim of extorting money from the victims.
This new wave of so-called sextortion (blackmail using sex-related pretexts) consists of hackers sending email messages to users who allegedly watch pornographic videos online. In the message, they indicate to the victim that they have their device under control and that their behavior while watching the video was recorded via the webcam.
The victim is then threatened that if he fails to make a payment within 48 hours of opening the message (at a value normally around € 1,800, although different amounts have already been detected), the video containing his recording will be sent to all contacts (allegedly stolen from the device that the hacker claims to have under control).
ESET clarifies that this scam is no more than an attempt at extortion, and hackers actually do not have any video of the victim. The specialist detected the practice of the coup in countries like United States, Australia, Germany, France, United Kingdom, Spain, Czech Republic and Russia.
The cybersecurity specialist offers some recommendations to users who fall victim to this scheme, telling them not to respond to the scam, not to download the attachments, not to click on lines embedded in the email, and of course, not send money to the criminal in question. ESET also suggests the placement of masking tape on the lenses of the webcam so as to avoid misuse of the built-in webcam.