4iQ Vice President of Marketing Claire Umeda received a disconcerting “sextortion” email not long ago, where a scammer tried to extort money using fear-based messaging. While the scam was fairly conspicuous, it was still infuriating how someone could play on fears, emotions and threaten people, especially during these uncertain times. Shortly after, Claire reached out to her network and found that these sort of blackmail emails are widespread, with many people confirming they too have been on the receiving end of these types of scams.
The good news: 4iQ R&D Director Alberto Casares has created a grassroots, volunteer-based project to help with this rising problem by aggregating, investigating and reporting on these attempts. If you’ve had a similar experience, feel free to send your scam emails to report[.]email[.]threats@gmail[.]com.
Working at 4iQ, I am almost too aware of data breaches happening on a daily basis. We investigate, validate and report on breached data every day. In fact, I can probably accurately surmise that this scammer got my email and clear text password in the 1.4 billion clear text credentials trove our breach hunters found back in 2017. Same goes for many of the forwarded scam emails I received. Interesting to see this information run full circle.