Unfortunately, increasing numbers of extortion email schemes is one of the results of the recent high-profile data breaches. The FBI issues a June 1st alert warning about these schemes (www.ic3.gov/media/2016/160601.aspx; “Extortion E-Mail Schemes Tied to Recent High-Profile Data Breaches”).

The FBI alert is very helpful as it provides five different extortion emails that consumers have reported to them. These extortion messages all want the consumer to send money in bitcoins or dollars. If the consumer doesn’t comply, the or  thieves will share the consumer’s personal and financial information with other people, including employers; or send all of the information to the people on the consumer’s Facebook page.

I urge you to read the full FBI alert so that you’re familiar with the specific examples and the tips provided to try and protect yourself.   Anyone who has received an extortion email should contact your local FBI field office and file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (www.ic3.gov).