Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Computers & InternetSecurity · 5 months ago

If you have been blackmailed, is it likely that the blackmailer is a person who you know?

I recently received a blackmail in the "spam filter" of my gmail account.

I am asking this, because the real question is "how can the blackmailer know your email address if you have not ever met him personally?".

The blackmailer claims that he has tracked me visiting adult sites and made a video of the website I viewed and saw me through the camera.

4 Answers

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  • Dave
    Lv 7
    5 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    It's a fairly old scam. They have downloaded one of the many data dumps from either the Yahoo hack or the MySpace hack from years ago. In most cases it contains both your email address AND the password you used on those sites. Knowing that information, they send a mass email to everyone on the list (millions of people) and hope that someone will be scared enough to just pay.

  • Anonymous
    5 months ago

    Why do you think there is a spam filter in the first place? Email addresses are tremendously easy to obtain. It doesn't take a lot of effort to guess email addresses, plus there have been various online companies over the years who have either had their database stolen, or they've deliberately sold their database to spammers. This has been going on so long in emails that people have spent resources trying to automatically sort out spam from legitimate email.

    So, it's no big deal if they have your email address, it's easy to get. What would be harder to do is to obtain your actual name from your email address. Sometimes it's easy to figure it out from the email, like for example, if your email address is john.doe@whatever.com, then they'd know your name must be John Doe. However, if your email is jd01572@whatever.com, then that's much harder to guess your name from it. And it's nearly impossible for automated routines to guess your name. If the phisher doesn't use your actual name, rather than just your email address, then that means that they don't actually know who you are.

    So just leave it in the spam folder, because your email provider was clever enough to figure out that it was spam, so you didn't have to.

  • 5 months ago

    No, chances are they have no idea who you are. It's a scam, sort of like phishing. They send out hundreds or thousands of emails to emails they have garnered from sites that do not protect your information. they hope to get a 1% response. So, they are not blackmailing you, they are hoping you're scared enough to pay the money

  • 5 months ago

    Just block the email address for this person, then see what happens. There are so many scams and spam attacks going on. The email address that you used somewhere at one time could have been sold to a spammer list.

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