The convincing Bitcoin scam e-mail extorting you

Want to help support this blog? Try out Oh Dear, the best all-in-one monitoring tool for your entire website, co-founded by me (the guy that wrote this blogpost). Start with a 10-day trial, no strings attached.

We offer uptime monitoring, SSL checks, broken links checking, performance & cronjob monitoring, branded status pages & so much more. Try us out today!

Profile image of Mattias Geniar

Mattias Geniar, October 17, 2018

Follow me on Twitter as @mattiasgeniar

A few months ago I received an e-mail that got me worried for a few seconds. It looked like this, and chances are you’ve seen it too.

From: Kalie Paci <>
Subject: mattias - UqtX7m

It seems that, UqtX7m, is your pass word. You do not know me and you are probably thinking
why you are getting this mail, correct?

Well, I actually placed a malware on the adult video clips (porn) web-site and guess what,
you visited this site to have fun (you know what I mean). While you were watching videos,
your browser started operating as a RDP (Remote control Desktop) that has a keylogger which
gave me access to your display and also web camera. Immediately after that, my software
program collected your entire contacts from your Messenger, FB, and email.

What exactly did I do?

I created a double-screen video. First part displays the video you were viewing (you have
a nice taste lol), and second part displays the recording of your web camera.

What should you do?

Well, in my opinion, $1900 is a fair price for our little secret. You’ll make the payment
through Bitcoin (if you do not know this, search “how to buy bitcoin” in Google).

BTC Address: 1MQNUSnquwPM9eQgs7KtjDcQZBfaW7iVge
(It is cAsE sensitive, so copy and paste it)

You now have one day to make the payment. (I’ve a unique pixel in this message, and right
now I know that you have read this email message). If I don’t get the BitCoins, I will
send your video recording to all of your contacts including members of your family,
colleagues, and many others. Having said that, if I do get paid, I will destroy the video
immidiately. If you need evidence, reply with “Yes!” and I definitely will send your video
recording to your 11 friends. This is a non-negotiable offer, and so please don’t waste
my personal time and yours by responding to this mail.

If you read it, it looks like spam – doesn’t it?

Well, the thing that got me worried for a few seconds was that the subject line and the body contained an actual password I used a while back: UqtX7m.

To receive an email with a – what feels like – personal secret in the subject, it draws your attention. It’s clever in the sense that you feel both violated and ashamed for the consequences. It looks legit.

Let me tell you clearly: it’s a scam and you don’t need to pay anyone.

I first mentioned it on my Twitter describing what feels like the brilliant part of this scam:

  • Email + Passwords, easy to get (plenty of leaks online)
    • Everyone watches porn
      • Nobody wants that leaked
        • The same generic e-mail can be used for every victim

        Whoever is running this scam thought about the psychology of this one and found the sweet spot: it gets your attention and it gets you worried.

        Well played. But don’t fall for it and most importantly: do not pay anything.

Want to subscribe to the cron.weekly newsletter?

I write a weekly-ish newsletter on Linux, open source & webdevelopment called cron.weekly.

It features the latest news, guides & tutorials and new open source projects. You can sign up via email below.

No spam. Just some good, practical Linux & open source content.