The “I have some bad news for you” email is a scam that tries to trick you into thinking that your computer or phone is infected with malware and then threatens to make your personal data public. Contrary to the claims in the email, you haven’t been hacked (or at least, that’s not what prompted this email) and this is nothing more than a scam that tries to trick you into sending Bitcoins to these scammers. This is merely a new variation on an old scam which is popularly being called “sextortion”.
This is the text of the “I have some bad news for you” blackmail email, including the grammatical and spelling errors:
Unfortunately, I have some bad news for you. Several months ago, I got access to the device you are using to browse the internet. Since that time, I have been monitoring your internet activity. Being a regular visitor of adult websites, I can confirm that it is you who is responsible for this. To keep it simple, the websites you visited provided me with access to your data. I’ve uploaded a Trojan horse on the driver basis that updates its signature several times per day, to make it impossible for antivirus to detect it. Additionally, it gives me access to your camera and microphone. Moreover, I have backed-up all the data, including photos, social media, chats and contacts. Just recently, I came up with an awesome idea to create the video where you cum in one part of the screen, while the video was simultaneously playing on another screen. That was fun! Rest assured that I can easily send this video to all your contacts with a few clicks, and I assume that you would like to prevent this scenario. With that in mind, here is my proposal: Transfer the amount equivalent to 1500 USD to my Bitcoin wallet, and I will forget about the entire thing. I will also delete all data and videos permanently. In my opinion, this is a somewhat modest price for my work. You can figure out how to purchase Bitcoins using search engines like Google or Bing, seeing that it’s not very difficult. My Bitcoin wallet (BTC): 13dk8JbVeEKGmHq7aevbdVxjg2cHYFT4kg You have 48 hours to reply and you should also bear the following in mind: It makes no sense to reply me – the address has been generated automatically. It makes no sense to complain either, since the letter along with my Bitcoin wallet cannot be tracked. Everything has been orchestrated precisely.
The above email and anything it states is just a scam to try and scare you into paying the ransom. If you have received the “I have some bad news for you” email, we recommend to delete it and under no circumstances send any money to these cybercriminals.
Is the “I have some bad news for you” email real?
No, and don’t panic. The “I have some bad news for you” email is a scam that tries to trick you into thinking that your device or email has been hacked, then demands payment or else they will send compromising information -such as images of you captured through your web camera or your pornographic browsing history – to all your friends and family. And in classic ransomware fashion, there’s typically a ticking clock. Giving users a short time limit to deliver the payment is social engineering at its finest.
Threats, intimidation, and high-pressure tactics are classic signs of a scam.
As you can imagine, the “I have some bad news for you” extortion email and anything it states is just a scam to try and scare you into paying the ransom.
They have my password! How did they get my password?
To make the threats more credible, the scammers may include one of your passwords in this email. The scammers have your password from sites that were hacked, and in this case, likely matched up to a database of emails and stolen passwords and sent this scam out to potentially millions of people. You can check if your email or password was compromised in a data breach on Haveibeenpwned.
If the password emailed to you is one that you still use, in any context whatsoever, stop using it and change it NOW. It’s also recommended that you enable two-factor authentication for your email and online accounts whenever that is an option.
Should I pay the ransom?
You should not pay the ransom. If you pay the ransom, you’re not only losing money but you’re encouraging the scammers to continue phishing other people.
Delete the “I have some bad news for you” email, and under no circumstances pay these cybercriminals a penny/dime/bitcoin.
What should I do now?
We recommend that you ignore the content of the “I have some bad news for you” email and delete it from your Inbox. However, if you have downloaded any attachments or clicked on any links from this email, or if you suspect that your computer might be infected with malware, you can follow the below guide to and scan your device for malware and remove it for free.
Depending on which operating system is installed on the device you want to scan for malicious programs, follow the removal guide.
- Scan and remove malware from Windows
- Scan and remove malware from Mac
- Scan and remove malware from Android