Lost dog resident of North Carolina had received a demand to pay ransom in bitcoins.
Patricia Howell (Howell Patricia) was asked to pay 600 thousand dollars in bitcoins, otherwise her dog named happy threatened to sell or to kill. The owner of the dog said that it is a Scam, since at that point the dog is already found.
When happy was gone, Howell has published information about the dog in Facebook, and also on a special portal called Pawboost. Presumably, scammers have found this information in social networks and tried to capitalize on the anonymity of bitcoin.
Caller Howell extortionist warned that uses a burner phone that can’t be traced by the police. The woman reported the incident to the police station of the County of Granville. According to police, this is the first case in their practice, but they heard about similar incidents in other parts of the country.
According to Howell, the fraudsters «should look for another way to earn money».
It is believed that bitcoin is used in fraud and attempted extortion because of their irreversible transactions, and because many people mistakenly believe these transactions notracking.
Often, the criminals demand a ransom to be paid in bitcoins infecting computers with ransomware, and some criminals make such attacks millions of dollars. Victims receive a ransom, the amount of which is usually about $ 200, otherwise all confidential information from their computers will be destroyed either (depending on situation) posted on the Internet.
Despite the fact that methods of communication with the victim and her results are different, other details attempts to obtain a ransom for lost dog absolutely identical to the techniques used in the attacks of ransomware.
Last week in South Africa was kidnapped 13-year-old student whose parents have received a note with the requirement to pay $ 120,000 bitcoins.
In December 2017, the criminals got (allegedly) 1 million dollars in bitcoins in exchange for the life of the employee of cryptocurrency exchanges Exmo – Russian programmer Pavel Lerner. After paying the ransom Lerner was released.