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Sam
Sam, Attorney at Law
Category: Legal
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Experience:  20 years of experience practicing law.
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I discovered my wife was cheating. It devastated me, and I

Customer Question

I discovered my wife was cheating. It devastated me, and I made the huge mistake of engaging on online hacker to figure out her password. I sent payment and then came to my senses and closed out my email account before getting any response. A few days ago, I received a spam mail from my wife's account that had someone else as the addressee (I assume I was a bcc). I live in Florida, have a position of significant responsibility, have a solid track record of good deeds, and have only this one misguided judgment as a black mark. Can you assess my risk of being blackmailed and of criminal prosecution? Thanks.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Sam replied 2 years ago.

Hi

Alright. So you are concerned this hacker you hired is going to use this against you?

Was all of this done online with this person? Do you owe them money?

Tell me more about the spam email - what did it say? Was it to your wife?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I wired the funds -- actually getting uneasy with what was happening and just hoped never to hear again from him (which is why I closed my email account shortly thereafter). I did not want the password XXXXX did not get it. I had provided him in my initial contact with my wife's email address and gave him my name and location. It was a Nigerian Western Union office. The email I received from my wife's email address was obviously generated by someone who broke into her account. It had a "hey, check this out" heading and hyperlink to a meaningless website. A computer expert told me several days ago that the chances of being blackmailed are a 1 on a scale of 1 to 10, and identity theft is their game. Maybe he was thinking that blackmailing distraught spouses like me would destroy the market for for fiuture customers. Getting the spam email has shaken me up, however, especially since I was not the primary addressee. I have not broken into my wife's account, but am concerned I may have set something in motion that enabled someone else to do so. I do not think my wife would want to see me prosecuted, if that means anything, and intend to let her know and apologize.
Expert:  Sam replied 2 years ago.
Hi

It sounds to me as if the your computer friend is correct. This is a spammer who may or maynot have been able to get into your wife's computer But since you got the email, it may be possible they got into her email acount.

However, I also suggest that they would not try to blackmail you because what they are doing is illegal and in violation of state and federal law. So I would say you should not concern yourself with that.

At this point, your wife should reset her password. These spammers/hackers generally move on quite fast. So if they were going to get anything, they have what they need or maybe there is nothing for them to get.

You do what you feel is best about revealing this to your wife. I cannot make any suggestions in that regard.

This person got money from you and they may try to get more - I suggest maybe not. I suggest you can just ignore them at this point. They can't say they took money from you to commit a crime of hacking and invasion of privacy as that is the crime just as much as you paying someone to do this.

They may threaten to tell your wife, but I doubt they would really even go that far. These folks who run these scams from Nigeria or whereever move very fast. They don't linger in anticipation of getting caught.

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Your feedback is very helpful. I did indicate in my last email to the hacker that I sent the $200 to cover his time and did not want the password XXXXX the account broken into. I heard nothing further, and it now has been two weeks. I suspect they can sell my information, including part of the email trail to others (including potential blackmailers), although I come up with nothing of this nature on Google. It seems, if they are in a foreign country, they could operate with impunity. If I am being paranoid, let me know and I will move on to payment and rating momentary. One loose end -- do matters Iike this typically get prosecuted, especially if the spouse does not want to press. Except for one case in Michigan on Google that generated extensive publicity, I see no other stories. I at least tried to stop it from happening, and in the end, there is no clear linkage between the spam and my transaction.PS. They asked for my name and phone number when I sent payment. Seems like if they just wanted to run and hide, they would not bother. Just to be clear, you do not think there is a way for them to blackmail without putting themselves at risk?
Expert:  Sam replied 2 years ago.

Hi

This would be a situation where the spouse would have to push a criminal charge with the District Attorney. A DA is not going to force the spouse to file charges or force prosecution.

I believe they can try to blackmail. And that will be threatening to tell your spouse of this situation. And yes, they can do it behind the curtains so to speak. The FBI does have teams who try to break these spammers up although I am not absolutely sure how that is done. But if your spouse is told of the this situation by you, then they have nothing to black mail you with. Of course, it may be that they contact your wife and she is wise enough to know that they are scammers and avoid them. Still, she should change her password.

I don't want to say you are paranoid, but I suggest you are worrying needlessly at this time

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.

Sam, Attorney at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 21979
Experience: 20 years of experience practicing law.
Sam and 9 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
So, in closing, sounds more like a theoretical and unlikely rather than practical and proximate risk? And, in reading my own words, it seems like I really did try to stop it. Thanks for a final response, and I will get on to rating and payment.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I just noticed something in rereading your last response that puzzled me. You mentioned they might contact my wife directly. Why would they do something like that without trying to shake me down first. Is it a good sign that almost two weeks have passed without any contact since paying them and telling them I did not want to proceed?
Expert:  Sam replied 2 years ago.
Hi

Apologies for not being more clear. Of course, I meant if they were contacting you and you igored them or told them to go pound sand - the premise of the black mail would more than likely be "Im going to tell your wife"

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I found this group via a Google search for marital investigative services. To the extent they are promoting themselves openly as investigators, but turn out to be a front for hackers, does that further reduce the blackmail risk? Presumably, they want to stay in business. Also, the contact information was a Yahoo email address. So long as I have that, would it be possible to trace in the event necessary?
Expert:  Sam replied 2 years ago.

Hi

If you were to report any of this activity to the FBI and you provided them with a Yahoo or other Email address they might be able to trace an IP address. But seriously, these folks are so rogue they move fast and this is why I suggest you really shouldn't hear from them again. They got money from you and that is teally all they want

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.

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