Video Screencast Help
Protect Your POS Environment Against Retail Data Breaches. Learn More.
Security Response

The Hitman is Back!

Created: 05 Jul 2011 12:29:52 GMT • Updated: 23 Jan 2014 18:20:10 GMT • Translations available: 日本語
Samir_Patil's picture
0 0 Votes
Login to vote

He was seen several years ago. Now, he is back with the name “Don Gunshot”!

Luring people with promises of huge sums of money in return for bogus favors is the classic method adopted by the Nigerian/419 type of spammers. It is one of the oldest forms of spamming; very rudimentary, yet creatively lethal. This revisited scam tactic uses coercion to force people to pay up or else they will (apparently) face dire consequences. From a lighter point of view, however, it is a bit more humorous than scary.


 
The above email is indeed a perfect example of a scammer trying to blackmail someone they don’t know from Adam. The spammer does not know you, but he pretends to have received blood money to kill you. He blackmails you with threats of dire consequences if you even try to whisper the secrets explained in the mail. Forget the police, and if you dare to try and tell your nearest and dearest friends about the impending threat, your life will be in danger. The plot thickens with a ransom that you need to pay in two parts to save your life; albeit with a strict deadline to follow. The scammer tries to emphasize the seriousness of the issue with pictures (attached to the email) of sniper rifle-toting men on the look out for you.

Having threatened the victim, he now tries to bargain within a fixed timeline. There is a rider too—any negligence could cost you your life. He even promises to provide proof of the requested “hit” once he receives the first payment routed through his given channels.

But then, suddenly, there is a miraculous change of heart. The spammer comes up with an offer: “this is the first time I turn out to be a betrayer in my job. I took pity on you that is why I have made up my mind to help you if you are willing to help yourself” What appears to be a change of heart is actually the crux of the issue, the ulterior motive— your money! On the other hand, it is still pretty funny that the death threat message ends with the scammer’s “Regard.”

Do not reply to any such emails. We have been observing a wave of these types of emails over the past couple of days, all with an identical message. The goal of this spam is to disclose bank account information and attempt to clean out any money that can be accessed. It is just another somewhat creative ploy to steal your money.

--------------------------

Note: Thanks to Paresh Joshi for contributed content.