It's the latest online scam and to a lot of people it may be convincing. Hackers get into your email account and send hundreds of messages, pretending to be you, asking for money.
Kory LaBonne has been making apology phone calls. That is because, of his 400 email contacts more than half received a cryptic email from him this week. The message said he had taken a trip to Spain, was involved in a cab accident, had been robbed, and needed $3,000. A devastating scenario — if it had been true.
"Obviously, I'm not in Spain. I wasn't in a cab accident, nor do I need $3,000. Of course Ill take $3,000," LaBonne said with a laugh.
LaBonne realized hackers got into his account earlier in the week.
Here is how it happened: He got an email from what he thought it was his email company. They wanted to verify his account was still active but they needed his user name and password. He gave it to them.
"I was thinking it [the email] looked pretty legit," says LaBonne, "they had the logo, letterhead all the proper signatures. I responded and gave them the information."
That was his mistake. From there that cryptic email was sent out. Now, he has had to suffer the consequences.
"It is definitely a frustrating and it is an inconvenience," says LaBonne.
But, it could have been worse. Police say, some people fall for emails like that and actually send money to the scammers.
That is why computer experts like Joe Canarecci say don't trust anyone online.
"If someone walked up to you on the street, in a suit and said I need to verify your bank information and to do that I need your PIN, bank account and social security number, you wouldn't do it," says Canarecci, "everyone is always wary of this stuff in real life, but when it comes to the internet they are like, 'Oh well, this says it is coming from my bank.'"
So, Canarecci says the main key is don't give your password out to anyone.
Sometimes hackers will use a more secretive way in, often through pop-ups. The pop-up will tell you to update your software or it will closely resemble your virus protection software.
Canarecci says don't click anything otherwise you invite the hacker into your computer. Instead he recommends using the keyboard combination of ALT + F4 or simply shut the computer off by hitting the power button.
To find out about common viruses or scams there are websites that have more information: