Rough waters continue for Ashley Madison cheaters
November 23, 2015
By KAREN VELIE
Opening up his Earthlink account Monday, a San Luis Obispo based attorney found five threatening emails, each attempting to extort money because of the attorney’s participation on the hookup website Ashley Madison.
The site, with a tagline that says “Life is short, have an affair,” claims it provides participants access to married people wanting to have an affair. Shortly after Aug. 17, when hackers released the credit card and billing information of the more than 37 million users of Ashley Madison, the extortion attempts began.
In most cases, the poorly written extortion letters demand one or two bitcoins, worth $250 to $500. If not paid, the sender claims they will expose the alleged cheaters to their family and friends.
One email, sent from Nancy Smith, gives the attorney 48 hours to pay one bitcoin or face exposure. CCN is not using the name of the attorney, who has not given into the extortionist’s demands, to protect his privacy.
Following is one of the emails in its entirety:
“Hey XXXXX XXXXX !
“I would like to tell you that Ashley Madison was recently hacked, and now I have all the information about your online affairs and even the cheatings you did ;) I have located all your social networking and dating website profiles, and using this I am going to send message to all of your friends and family members about this.
“Well, for sure, you would feel ashamed if I tell your family members and friends about this, and it would be even more worse, when you meet them face to face. Wondering how to prevent me from doing this? Its simple, you need to send just 1 Bitcoin (i.e One BTC) to the following Bitcoin address: 13q1PpnrvGFakzfvnE8Hi2NC7qnnDkudnX
“You may be wondering why should you and what will prevent other people from doing the same, in short you can now delete your social and dating accounts. So go ahead and give it a try. Do you think, you can get away so easily? I have already saved a copy of your profiles, pics, chat logs, and even the contact details of your relatives and friends.
“You can get bitcoins at an exchange like Expresscoin.com, Localbitcoins.com, Clevercoin.com, Coincorner.com, Coincafe.com, Coinbase.com, Circle.com or a Bitcoin ATM machine Coinatmradar.com. If I do not receive the Bitcoin in the next 48 hours, I am going to contact all of your friends and relatives and post your profiles, pics, etc all ONLINE. Oh! I didnt tell you, that I know where you live and hangout, did I?
“Just think if you are in committed relationship how this will affect your social standing amongst your friends, family members and others. Your countdown is started.
In another email, the sender listed as Steven Simon, includes personnel information about the attorney:
“Unfortunately your data, including complete credit card details, was leaked in the recent hacking of Ashley Madison. Below is the glimpse of the data we have about you:
“Name: XXXXX XXXXX
Address: XXXX XXXX Street, CA , US
Credit Card Type Used: MC
Credit card number: XXXX XXXX XXXX 8602
Last Payment: 49.00 on 2013-10-26 03:28:26
Your computer ip address: 93401
“Plus we have access to your complete profile data including your pics, secret fantasies, conversations, etc.
“We have access to your Facebook page as well. If you would like to prevent me from sharing this dirt info with all of your friends, family members, spouse, then you need to send exactly 2 bitcoins (BTC) to the following BTC address:
“Bitcoin Address: 1Hg9bcYL6J6624i5UJFLs958H9AHWAzDJu
“We are providing a chance to solve this case. You make a payment to the above mentioned btc address. The time ends in the next 24 hours. We will not publish your data and we will not inform your contacts.
“You can get bitcoins at an exchange like Expresscoin.com, Localbitcoins.com, Clevercoin.com, Coincorner.com, Coincafe.com, Coinbase.com, Circle.com or a Bitcoin ATM machine Coinatmradar.com.
“If you pay within 24 hours of receipt then we will delete your record. No payment? Then you will see what happen after this period. Once this period has expired, we can’t do anything more for you. Our website is launching soon. We will surprise your family, friends and colleague with it. We will give you this one last chance.
“You may be wondering why should you and what will prevent other people from doing the same, in short you now know to change your privacy settings in Facebook so no one can view your friends/family list. So go ahead and update that now (I have a copy if you dont pay).
“Consider how expensive a divorce lawyer is. If you are no longer in a committed relationship then think about how this will affect your social standing amongst family and friends. What will your friends and family think about you?”
Despite warnings by law enforcement, researchers say multiple Ashley Madison users have paid the extortionist’s demands with the hope their information would be scrubbed from the web.
However, according to Staff Superintendent Bryce Evans of the Toronto Police Service, “Nobody is going to be able to erase that information.”
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