People are the worst. An unknown number of arseholes are threatening to expose Ashley Madison users, presumably ruining their marriages. The hacking victims must pay the extortionists “exactly 1.0000001 Bitcoins” or the spouse gets notified. Ugh.
This is an unnerving but not unpredictable turn of events. The data that the Ashley Madison hackers released early this week included millions of real email addresses, along with real home addresses, sexual proclivities and other very private information. Security blogger Brian Krebs talked to security firms who have evidence of extortion schemes linked to Ashley Madison data. Turns out spam filters are catching a number of emails being sent to victims from people who say they will make the information public unless they get paid!
Here’s one caught by an email provider in Milwaukee:
Unfortunately, your data was leaked in the recent hacking of Ashley Madison and I now have your information.
If you would like to prevent me from finding and sharing this information with your significant other send exactly 1.0000001 Bitcoins (approx. value $225 USD) to the following address:
Sending the wrong amount means I won’t know it’s you who paid.
You have 7 days from receipt of this email to send the BTC [bitcoins]. If you need help locating a place to purchase BTC, you can start here…
The above email was forwarded to Brian Krebs who points out that no bitcoins have been added that wallet yet. (Looks like the Milwaukee-based victim did not pay up.)
One security expert explained to Krebs that this type of extortion could be dangerous. “There is going to be a dramatic crime wave