North Carolina 12-year-old’s PlayStation account hacked, held for ransom

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WJZY) — Authorities in North Carolina are investigating a case of extortion and blackmail after someone hacked into a 12-year-old boy’s PlayStation account, stealing his password and locking him out.

The boy’s mom asked NewsNation affiliate WJZY not to use his full name but use his nickname ‘Jman.’

Jman said he was playing on his PS4 a few days ago when he was suddenly kicked out of his online account.

He says that the alleged hacker then started making demands through Instagram that have gone on for days. Jman said, “He changed the password and the email so that I wouldn’t receive anything about him changing it.”

Just like that, the almost 13-year-old lost access to everything on his PS4 online profile.

“I spent money on certain things on the games like data stuff. I’ve gotten really far into the game,” he explained.

Right away, the alleged hacker started messaging Jman on Instagram through a profile with no photo and no posts, just the name ‘Kevin’ in the bio section.

Jman said the hacker told him, “I want a $50 PS4 gift card, or I’m going to use a lot of money on your account, and I’m going to sell it to somebody.”

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Jman isn’t sure if the hacker will really do that, but the threats have been escalating.

“If you don’t give it to me by this time, I’m going to take it up to $100,’ and a lot of people want your account; it’s very rare and stuff,” Jman said the hacker wrote. “He’s just trying to get a lot of money out of me from my own account.”

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police report from June 15 lists the crimes under extortion/blackmail, as well as hacking/computer invasion.

The good news: Jman’s mom said they were able to pause the credit card attached to his PS4 account, so no one can access that money.

Her advice to other parents is to consider skipping the online gaming accounts and just stick to buying games in the store. Jman has made it clear that he’s not paying up.

“If I give them the [gift] card, they’re not going to give me back my account; they’re still going to sell it,” he said.

Jman is just hoping to have the account shut down temporarily, effectively sending the hackers back into cyberspace for good.

The family has been in contact with Sony for help getting Jman’s account shut down temporarily; so far, they haven’t had any success.

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