Bitcoin & blackmail

I normally would be writing this blog and posting it right away, but a little thing happened yesterday which has kind of put a kink in things and might have taken a couple years off my life due to the stress it has caused.

Let’s backtrack. I own a company that imports cables and we sell cables, adapters, and wire to different sales channels. Recently I’ve been bombarded with scammers trying to get us to sell them cables or wire in large quantities, under the guise that they are a well-known university like the University of Utah or University of Colorado.  They use an email address that looks very similar to the University’s email. So after several of these, I thought that I would mess with them a little. I played along with their game and got the order “ready” for them to pick up. I gave them a contact name (who happened to be the Orem, Utah Chief of Police), his cell phone #, and the pick-up address (the Orem Police Department.) For some reason I didn’t hear back from them.  I was really curious what happened.

Soon afterwards I started getting a ton of phone calls every day from scammers. So again I decided to mess with them. I started to speak French instead of English.  This threw them off as they passed the phone around to different people all trying to figure out what language I was speaking.  It ended up with them using a bunch of foul language and yelling at me while I questioned “comment?” in French.

Well, it may be coincidence, or not, but our company website got hacked on Thursday last week.  Like really bad! It’s still down after several days. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men cannot put this website back together again. It is destroyed.  So I’m very suspicious that this is all related.

Then, yesterday I get an email, and in the subject of the email it has my name and a password that I used to use for just about everything. (and still was using in several places where I haven’t updated a password in many years). This email goes on to say that I can clearly see that they have my password “********”, and that they’ve hacked into my cameras, my Facebook contacts, and my email, and unless I send them $2,000 USD of bitcoin to this “******” account within 24 hours, they are going to start sending malicious things to all of my contacts.  


Normally I would have brushed this off as another ridiculous scam, but this was a little different, because they had my name, my email, and albeit an older password, it was indeed a real password that was unique to me. I got this email while at church on Sunday, and to say the least, I was a bit distracted trying to think if I had bank accounts etc. that still used this password. As a small business owner, I’ve used a lot of business and personal logins all using the same password so I could remember it. I was extremely anxious.

So, I immediately sent them the money.  Just kidding. That wasn’t going to happen. But I wanted to be extremely cautious.


After church when I got home, and I started logging into all critical websites and started changing my password to very difficult passwords, which I will never remember, each one unique, so that if one is discovered, the others will not be easily accessed.

So here we are Monday night, and my hard-copy notepad with all the new mega-difficult passwords is at my office, and I am at home, and I have no idea what my password is for my blog. Haha.  So there you have it.

As an update, the 24 hours passed.  Nothing happened. I did talk to the local police department and because of the nature of extortion, they had me contact the FBI and file a complaint. I am expecting Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully to come by any time.

My life really is pretty boring, but then things like this happen and I just shake my head. Kind of crazy.  If there are any would-be scammers who have happened upon this blog, SHAME ON YOU! Even though not a penny was taken from me because of the email, I have really stressed about it and spent a lot of time filing reports, changing passwords, etc.  Not to mention my still-disabled business website. Aye aye aye. I’m hoping and praying that some good things come from this. I guess I’m going to be more safe with passwords at the very least.

I have thought about these modern-day Gadianton robbers of the land, who prey on people’s fear. They call all the time claiming to be from Microsoft or AT&T and that they need to access the computer because of a virus. There are so many of these modern-day Gadianton robbers which we call scammers.  They are all over the face of the land, which, now with the internet, can be anywhere, as they plunder and spread their work of darkness and secret combinations. There is real evil in the world. People who prey on others. Who steal. Who have no natural love or kindness towards their fellow beings. And as the Gaidanton robbers, they hide in secret places so they cannot be discovered by law enforcement.

Timothy spoke of the trials and evil in the last days:

1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Matthew also foretold of evil the latter days. 

29 Behold I speak for mine elect’s sake; for nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

30 And again, because iniquity shall abound, the love of men shall wax cold; but he that shall not be overcome, the same shall be saved.

31 And again, this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come, or the destruction of the wicked;

32 And again shall the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, be fulfilled.

We need to love one another, help one another, and be about doing good. We need to help defend our friends and family from these modern-day Gadianton robbers, who often target the elderly, and are becoming more brazen.

I hope your week is going well and that you can learn from your trials. I’m trying to learn from mine.

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Jason Bringhurst lives in Port Angeles, Washington, USA. I am the father of 6 children, husband of the lovely and talented Jen Bringhurst, a small business owner, a listener of 80's new-wave music, an enthusiast of hot-rod & classic cars, a lover of pizza & Diet Coke, and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This blog in no way is meant to officially represent The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, nor is it meant to be officially related to my current ward or calling in Port Angeles, nor my former wards or callings in Highland and Springville, Utah. is simply a way for me to spread sunshine and share my faith.

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