Hamilton

OPP Norfolk warn residents about porn extortion scam

The provincial police in Norfolk are investigating a pornography email extortion scam.
Provincial police in Norfolk are investigating a pornography email extortion scam that threatens victims to send an amount of bitcoin. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

After being contacted by a victim, provincial police in Norfolk County are investigating a pornography extortion scam.

She told them of the email around 11:00 a.m. Tuesday. 

The victim told police that the email said her accounts had been hacked and that the sender had her passwords. She also said that the sender was aware of the adult pornography websites that she had visited; if she refused to forward a quantity of bitcoin, pictures and video of the websites she visited would be forwarded to everyone in her contact list. 

The victim realized that the email was a scam and immediately contacted police. She did not forward any money or her personal information to the scammers. 

In order to protect yourself from scams, the OPP says don't click on links or attachments in emails sent by someone you don't know. (CBC)

Police say that these emails are designed to create anxiety in order to shock people into sending money. 

"These types of messages are commonly known as scareware," said OPP. "If you receive one of these messages, please be aware that this is a scam." 

Police say that if you've received such an email or if you have been locked out of your computer, your computer might have been infected with malware. 

They listed tips to protect yourself from email scams: 

  • Never download anti-virus software from a pop-up or link sent to you through an e-mail.
  • Update your anti-virus software often and scan your computer for viruses regularly.
  • Don't click on links or attachments in e-mails sent to you by someone you don't know. 
  • Turn on your browser's pop-up blocking feature.
  • Never click on a pop up that claims your computer has a virus.