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The “hitman scam”


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The “hitman scam” is heating up around the country, and while it’s horrifying, it’s also easy to not fall for the extortion attempt once you’re aware of what’s happening. Put simply, a person contacts you claiming that they’ve been hired to kill you (or will otherwise end your life, perhaps without even being paid to do it, in some cases). Fortunately, the scammers behind this one usually aren’t the brightest bulbs—one dummy even emailed the CHIEF OF POLICE (!) of a New York town telling her that her life would be spared in exchange for what amounted to $6,639 (.40 in bitcoin currency to be exact). The “hitmen,” who know that you’ll probably be freaking out after the death threat (and wanting more info), will sometimes promise to reveal who “hired them” to kill you if you pay up. Another strategy? A countdown. One popular email version of the scam gives recipients a mere three days to pay up (talk about pressure!) before, tick tock, time’s up. And of course, reporting the scam will allegedly get you killed. The scammers are relying on you to react emotionally. But you have learned to stop, think and react logically anytime someone is issuing threats and making demands. Whatever you do, do not respond to these hitman scams with any personal information.

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