How I blackmail game currency trading
My first BMW is the result of the hard work of a professional blackmailer
Good afternoon, dear Habr!
For more than two years I was a professional blackmailer in the trading industry of various MMORPG currencies. With the decline in interest in multi-user sandboxes, my profit has also fallen to almost zero. Therefore, in the end, I decided to tie up, raise my startup and repent to people. In this article I will explain in detail what I started with; how easy it is to get a mailbox in the Blizzard.com domain zone; about how a stupid combination of circumstances almost destroyed more than six months of my hard work; how incredulous people are; how to lose $ 10,000 for the sake of anonymity; and just that it’s not easy to sit on someone else’s gold mine, while remaining a person.
I am sure many will immediately begin to criticize my way of thinking. However, I ask you to be condescending - at the end of the story everything ended well both for me and for the projects that I profit from. I hope that after reading you will have a good opinion of me as a symbiont, but not a parasite. In fairness, it is worth noting that I managed to remove a couple of unscrupulous projects from the business, completely ruining them.
A little about yourself and your circle of friends
I was born in a family of two people who are far from IT in the small village of Kadnikovo near Yekaterinburg. The key figure in childhood was my uncle Igor. About ten years later I called him Igor Andreevich, later he allowed to call him simply Igor or “Bychara”, “Bull”. That was the name of his friends, with whom he protected the truckers passing by and a couple of stalls in Yekaterinburg. Sometimes I went to work with him, and, at times, I was taken to another room while the adult uncles "talked".
Somewhere in 1996, Igor was imprisoned under articles 163 (extortion) and 171 (illegal business) for fifteen years. Dad always told me to stay away from his brother, and to protect my uncles from the influence of my friends, they gave me my first computer. Like most teenagers of that time, I developed an unhealthy craving for programming.
Time passed, I went to school, talked with friends, asked for money for a new computer. Once a month I went with dad to Yekaterinburg, where I spent absolutely all the time in computer clubs. After leaving school, my father told me to go to the Ural Mining State University  . Having successfully entered the budget, I was not particularly interested in studying. I felt that I was born into this world for a reason - I had to succeed. At that time, only money was success for me, I was young and hot.
I had enough experience with computers to get into a small computer club in the center of Yekaterinburg - right next to my hostel, not far from the Geologicheskaya metro station. I was pleased to maintain the equipment, but I hated people for their ignorance of handling computer hardware. At night, I rarely appeared in my room: most often I slept in a computer club, completely exhausted by the passionate work on some new C ++ program. Yes, these fun days with C ++. I remember as if it were yesterday.
And here my uncle, thanks to the necessary thieves, left the zone for good behavior. They cut his term, but for another three years he had to constantly report to the district police officer. He was under the hood.
When Igor came out, the first thing he started was a “legal” business. I don’t know exactly what he was doing for the next three years, but I’m sure that he didn’t go far from his past affairs, and almost all district police officers at that time were sold for a good share. While the Bull lifted its prey to the horns, I worked diligently in World of Warcraft  .
I did not graduate from the university, I was expelled from the third year for an insane amount of tails and my temperament: I directly told the “professors” who lectured from the papers that they were ignorant. There was one good person at the faculty - an excellent C ++ programmer, but at that time my knowledge base was heavier. And later I switched to Java.
Once, Igor invited me to drink with him at one of the bars that were “owed” to him. I just did not know what to do on the weekend, and therefore agreed. The conversation went about "Business" and our role in the lives of other people. Having fairly gathered up, we began to argue that there are a lot of idiots around who do not need their money. While my uncle was releasing jokes in the direction of the waitress's model appearance, I thought. I wanted to succeed, but I did not want to go against the law. Of course, you need to take money from those who themselves violate the law, or a license agreement. At the same time, I didn’t want my brothers to find and “take revenge” on me, so I aimed at cyber criminals. Most likely, it was at that moment that I firmly decided to start anonymously blackmailing programmers who illegally profit from other people's projects. A sort of Batman on the Internet.
I set up the proxy, figured out the Tor  system , and came up with a sonorous nickname. My victims - the people I started protecting, - from now on knew only my nickname "TheShantazör". Due to the high rate of anonymity, no one could find me. An opportune moment was an article on RBC.ru about the Elf Merchant  , who traded various game currencies.
How to get soap on Blizzard.com and stay anonymous
Having developed a detailed blackmail scheme, I decided to get an email in the Blizzard.com domain zone. At that time, it was possible to get a job either as a programmer or in technical support of this company. Since programmers obviously have to work, I chose the technical support path. Igor helped me get a scan of a stolen passport in the name of “Ivan Bronga”, I wrote a short resume, described my life situation and the fact that I can’t come for an interview because I’m paralyzed from the waist down - which, although it was not true, was officially documented.
After about a hundred letters with assignments on knowledge of the world of World of Warcraft and the Blizzard work system - I had to read the documentation here for a couple of weeks - I was accepted for a trial period, and even sent an audio headset to a non-existent registration address. Probably the person who received the small gift was very happy. Of course, I didn’t answer a single call to tech support - sorry, if at that time you tried to get through to Blizzard. I was officially fired due to the fact that I did not pass the trial tests. But for me, the matter has already been done: I received an email in the domain zone of a large company, and a little tinkering with the databases, I staked it out for myself. The script on the server checked the workers once a day and deleted the addresses of those who had already been fired - I managed to “quit” bypassing the script and the address was left to me: firstname.lastname@example.org. About a month it took me to get full access to e-mail. It's time to have fun with the owners of sites that violate the license agreement.
I decided to start my career from small sites and the first thing on the list was the Night Money service  . In those days, it had just begun to develop, there was no one to “protect” the service, there were not particularly investors, but the income was already decent. Thanks to a couple of simple phone calls to the hoster of their site, I found out the name of the owner. Without thinking twice, I went through Tor and a couple of proxies to a dedicated server in Singapore, from where I connected to the mail and wrote my first letter with the requirements of the share:
Good afternoon, Anton!
On your website - www.night-money.ru - you, as I understand it, trade World of Warcraft gold.
According to the user agreement (http://eu.blizzard.com/en-gb/company/legal/wow_tou.html), which is signed by all users of our products, clause III.2.5, you are not entitled to perform any in-game actions for remuneration in real currency.
Moreover, if your service is discovered by other Blizzard employees, prosecution will begin under Articles 159, 171 of the Criminal Code and 11.1 of the Code of Administrative Offenses - which, obviously, will not do you any good.
However, there is another way out of such a deplorable situation: I offer you help for a modest reward. Thanks to access to the Blizzard corporate network, I can add the site to the filter blacklist; that is, while I work at Blizzard, and while our agreement is in force, my colleagues will never torture you.
I look forward to hearing.
TheShantazör, Blizzard Ltd.
The thing was done. Despite the great excitement inside, I was very restrained. Everything went according to plan, like clockwork. After a couple of days, I received a response from Anton:
What kind of deal is this? How much do you ask? Who are you anyway? How do you know my name and my email?
Of course, not quite the answer that I expected; but a step towards success was made. Thoughtfully continued the conversation:
About the deal everything is perfectly described in the previous email. I ask for 1% of the profit. We not only know who you are, but where you live. We are aware of the situation of your father and of your wife, Angelina, with two police drives in 2005. You are under the hood.
After this letter I had to wait. Day, three, a week. My patience burst - I already knew what to do. Just like that, with letters, of course, it was impossible to achieve anything. I called Igor, who already has a cafe network in Yekaterinburg and Chelyabinsk. He knew why I called and whose contact I needed to give. Igor was already in the subject and was proud of me. He quickly agreed with the corrupt policeman by phone and an hour and a half later I received an email:
Do not touch us. Tell me where to send the money.
Picked up a fish! My uncle called his friend, who, wearing a uniform, came to the client’s house. At this time, Anton was not at home, there was only his wife. She called 02 and clarified the information - the policeman really sent to their home.
After Anton returned home from work, he had a close conversation with a representative of law enforcement agencies. Anton was clearly told what he was accused of, a false subpoena was issued, and a second proposal put forward by me was put forward.
I’m waiting for 5000 BTC in a week to the account: 167XfWL7JWzYjbs46xH46fNDBmE4FmfMBS - for refusing to cooperate.
And do not forget to throw 1% on top for this month. We monitor your accounts and site.
The thing was done. Over the next year, everything went great with Night Money. After that I had to take more serious measures: a couple of times the people of the Bull visited home to Anton. In 2012, he had a daughter and we decided to let him go. It is terrible to imagine how fierce the world would be without concepts.
The gold mine turned to the forest before
A similar situation occurred with Yaroslav "Elf Merchant" Andreev. I will not add correspondence, because, I think, you have familiarized yourself with the basic principles of my blackmail strategy. About six months of the contract with the Elf, we were absolutely satisfied. He unfastened the percentage to me, I unfastened Igor. But then we wanted 5%, our greed ruined us. At that time I already had a great car, but my apartment did not suit me. Then the Elf began to dig under us.
I don’t understand how we missed this, but our client secured the support of one official - the new Thief in Law. Organs visited me. They took all the equipment, described the property, and most importantly - they had permission for all this. Of course, no one did anything to me, but the payments from the Elf ceased - we understood what all leads to. Someone wanted to scare us.
My uncle had the best rules, so he knew a similar situation in the far zero. His friend then went to live in London, where to this day Interpol unsuccessfully searches for him at the request of the Government of the Russian Federation. “The main thing is the family,” Igor told me. “Get the hell out of the country, while I’ve picked up a bit of bad luck, and I'll figure it out.” I collected everything I needed, good, all the money was on bitcoin exchange exchanges. Next week I was in London. I had to live in a hotel for a couple of weeks, and then I rented a house from a Russian pensioner. You could breathe deeply - no one is looking for me. From a hunter I turned into prey, and prey should be able to hide.
Deanonymization as it is
While I was basking under the clouds of Misty Albion, Igor worked. Involuntarily, I remembered the moment when he was relaxing to the fullest in that bar, and I talked to myself about the profit. Today, everything was exactly the opposite. Soon an article was written about me on the tape  , which greatly influenced my career.
They got to the most precious, to the point that I did not trust any of my clients - to my name. The tape published my name. It would seem that it’s okay - you can change the nickname, but in the narrow circles of currency dealers I was already someone legendary, from a kind of fiction. I need to get my name removed. It is necessary to ensure that it does not go to the masses. You need to reach the admins of the Ribbon. Where's the news coming from the Ribbon? They creep on the runet, like mold on wet plaster.
The bull called me. He wanted to help and had already found a man who, for ten kilos of evergreens, was ready to remove all information about me from the Internet. Well, this is a reasonable investment. So I paid. My name has disappeared from the archives of Yandex, RBC, Tape, Google and all other sites. Honestly, earlier I didn’t even think that such an operation is possible. You can change your appearance at the hand of an experienced surgeon - but it’s almost impossible to remove the information trail. But we succeeded. Nobody is looking for me anymore. Nobody knows me anymore.
There is no good and evil - there is only better evil
Meanwhile, the official who wanted to “free” the Elf from the “Tatar-Mongol Iga” wanted a share of the project. And this time he demanded not 1%, and not 5%, but 70%. This is how business is done in Russia - eat or be eaten. I think my uncle would have let the brakes go if that servant of the people had not begun to put pressure on his restaurants. For something that Igor really cherished, for his only island of legal happiness, which remained in a petrified soul. What happened next to that politician, I’m silent. No one else bothered the elf.
My name is Victor Semenov - this is who I have always been. This is my real life.
Thank you for reading to the end! Today I live in London and lead a small startup called Moon Connection . We are engaged in the delivery of various cargoes into orbit and other planets - whether it’s your favorite toy or grandfather’s ashes, they may end up in outer space.
We no longer had problems with the law, Igor is still involved in the restaurant business, and our former "customers" are in bloom and smell.
The only thing left to note: never forget the true purpose of your existence. “Family is the main thing,” and money ... and money will be.
1. Ural State Mining University
2. World of Warcraft
3. Tor project
4. “Elf Merchant turnover exceeded 1,000,000,000 gold coins” - RBC.ru
5. Night Money
6. “Revelations of Elf Merchant:“ I've been blackmailed for over a year ”” - Lenta .ru
The entire text above is the author’s fiction. Any coincidences with real names, events, projects, sites are random and unintentional. Victor Semenov never existed.