Don't Look Now - Your STEEM Account Was Stolen!

in oc •  10 months ago  (edited)

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It was Saturday night and we had just enjoyed a very pleasant day/evening entertaining my niece and her boyfriend with a "game night". It was close to midnight and I had an @actifit report to get posted. I was perplexed when I couldn't get my report to download to STEEM. I went to my Partiko app to try and determine whether me, Actifit, or STEEM was having the issue. And that when I saw it. (Image #1 above - Panic!) My wallet was empty! I knew I had over 100 STEEM and about 9 SBD in my account plus over 3000 SP. I know, it's not a fortune by any means. But those amounts represented a lot of hard work and posting for me.

I abandoned the phone and went to my computer. When I called up and looked at my balances - yep, it was gone. Then I saw the transactions transferring out my hard-earned coins to an account called @stcem.

Then I saw the really scary part - a Power Down had been initiated.


I started clicking on the STOP POWER DOWN button but all I got was error messages. That's when I knew I was locked out of my own account. I tried logging in with my Master Owner's account, but nope, everything thing had been changed.

At that point, I felt helpless and furious (Image #2 above - Fury!) at the same time. There's no customer support to call - no 800 number to report fraud and get a do-over. This is the Wild, Wild West of crypto. Shit!

I opened up Discord and wailed like a baby to my friends in PowerHouseCreatives and even though it was the wee hours of the morning (I knew there'd be no sleep for me that night!) there were friends there to talk to. Right away @brittandjosie was there to listen and she pinged @thekittygirl. And, wow, she jumped right on it and notified @steemcleaners and @spaminator so they'd know what happened to my account. @nickyhavey popped in as well with a suggestion. And today there have been loads of concerned comments from @jaynie (our fearless FHC leader) and my fellow community members!

I started a Full/Deep scan on my computer to see if any Malware had gotten in (0 threats were found) and I also did the Offline version that does a deeper search - again nothing found. So I'm still not sure what I did to allow this, but I know I'll be super careful about not logging into ANYTHING I'm not 100 % sure of in the future.

@thekittygirl got in touch with @guiltyparties and he messaged me on Discord. By now the thief had already sent out over 70 comments to various people with a phishing messaging trying to steal even more people's accounts. @guiltyparties was able to get all those comments flagged and hidden almost immediately through steemcleaners and spaminator. I have gone to every comment and edited it to say "deleted" so that no one will be able to be fooled by that evil spam. I sincerely apologize for anyone who had their post receive one of those comments!

@guiltyparties informed me that he'd been in touch with Steemit Inc and that my Account Recovery Request was a priority. This having happened on late Saturday night I was fully expecting to not see any action until today (Monday). But I was shocked to find the email from SteemIt in about 24 hours!


source edited by me in LunaPic

So today my emotional rollercoaster has landed be back on safe ground with a sigh of relief. I'm still mad as hell that though that there are so many people out there ready to work hard at stealing other people's money when they could just work hard and make their own! I hope none of you ever have to experience this particular rollercoaster, but if you do I hope you're lucky enough to find caring friends and knowledgeable experts to help you through it! I'm attaching some helpful posts and information that could assist anyone caught up in a mess like this - but my best advice is "Guard your keys, don't click on anything you're not SURE of, and keep your virus protection in place and up to date!"


Steemit Wallet Stolen Accounts Recovery

How Can I Keep My Steem Account Secure?

Got Hacked? Here's How To Get Your Account And Reputation Score Back!

Critical Information Sunday October 13, 2019



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NOOOOO!! I hope it never happens to you again! I wish people wouldn't do this stuff.

Yeah, once was enough! Thanks for stopping by and commiserating with me!

This is not nice.

Most definitely NOT! I hope no one else has to go through this!


I tried not to send a bunch of messages, because I knew you were probably dealing with your issues... Know that I am glad things were set in motion, and you were able to get your account back... lots of people who are working "behind the scenes"... trying to make sure these things don't happen to anyone else.

Thanks @wesphilbin! I hope I caught everything I needed to do. It was panic time there for awhile

Posted using Partiko Android

Phew!! What a scare!!!
And you are still not sure how this happened?
Ok, that’s disturbing 😅
So sorry this happened and glad things got sorted soonest

No still don't know what I did, it may have been awhile back even and they just actually took over late on Saturday night hoping I might not notice. Thanks for the hugs - appreciated!

This is the tricky one
Coz we don't even know what we did not to repeat it!!
May it never happen to you again... <33
and any one of us ...

I first noticed this on some phishing scam warning posts, and I felt so bad because I love your posts and it’s horrible when this happens.

The scammers are always getting more clever, they prey on you clicking on a link that asks for your key - and you give it. They disguise links well and make the key request look normal - it’s so easy.

Thank goodness you got it sorted out so quickly, everyone you mention in this post are incredible Steemians and always go above and beyond to help people. I wish more appreciation were made to all of them, especially @guiltyparties, @thekittygirl and brittandjosie

Pretty sure I am out of credit, but for what it is worth @tipu curate

Posted using Partiko iOS

Thanks @c0ff33a, I appreciate the support (and it's nice to hear someone enjoys my posts, lol). I was happy to make a thank you shout out to these fantastic people of STEEM.

The way so many individuals worked together in order to prevent that shit is remarkable. Thumbs up to everyone involved.

Yes, indeed! Big thumbs up!! Thanks for stopping by.

Crikey. That would sure have me in a panic.
Fantastic fast response from Steemit Inc though. Glad it got sorted!

Panic is an excellent description - sick to my stomach feeling, let me tell ya!

Urgh! Here, have a 100% vote on me for the stress! Hope things are good now

@ashtv - thank you! It was pretty stressful, could have turned out so much worse though.

I hate when people do things like this, so sorry it had to happen to you but glad you got so much support

@tatoodjay - yes, why they can spend so much time and effort on thinking about how to cheat other people - disgusting! I'm lucky, I know, that so many people helped out. Communities are a great thing!

Ohh yes it is a big plus of the communities on here on other platforms it would never be resolved so quickly

Sorry you experienced this. Ten months or so into my account this happened and the wonderful people at Palnet (minnowsupport) helped me get my account back.

Posted using Partiko Android

@wandrnrose7 - I'm glad you got help too - it's such a helpless feeling!

It is an awful feeling!

Posted using Partiko Android

Awesome way to respond to such a scary situation, Tammy - sharing your experience and providing links to excellent information! Here's to hoping someone figures out exactly how this happened, so it can be prevented in the future.

Tagging @cardboard as he was curious what happened with all those spam comments, and since @c0ff33a got you with the TipU curate thingy, here's something to go along with it...

@giphy curate 100

Upvoted 👌

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Thanks @traciyork - I just had to make a THANK YOU post, it was awesome how quickly they jumped on the problem and helped resolve it. And thanks for the @giphy curation!

You're very welcome, and I agree - this community is amazing when it comes to supporting each other when things like this happen! 😊

It is great to read that you got your account back. Thanks to everyone that gave a lending hand.

Thanks @ketcom - it was a group effort by a lot of people that made it happen so quickly!

That really, really sucks that it happened, but I'm glad for you that it's getting sorted out now!

Thanks @wwwiebe - it was scary and I hated that they spammed with my account.

I don't think it was anything you did. I think they scan steemworld to see which accounts are the most liquid. Run a line of script, pull the data and they have what they want. Once they have that and obviously they have the know how to hack passwords, there isn't anything you can do.

Sadly, as long as there is 'money' there will always be people who steal it. I am so sorry this happened to you. I am more upset at the fact they were sending out phishing comments. That to me is a personal attack it destroys your reputation. Not just the system we use but true reputation. It's a great thing to have the community we do, since most of us know you would never do anything like that. I know if I saw something like that with your name on it , I would have been in discord asking what was up.
Glad that @guiltyparties was able to get your account back to you so quickly.

@tryskele - thanks - it's nice to know that there are people who know me and know I'd never do that scamming phishing crap. That part really made me mad, like you said, more than the $$$ they got away with. This is really the first time I was glad about how long it takes to Power Down, lol.

That is a worst nightmare scenario - how horrible and thank goodness for the kind people in powerhousecrestives and others who came to your rescue!
Hope that never, never happens to you again!
Thanks for sharing this - it's a bit of a wake up call that it can happen to anyone!

@porters - thanks for stopping by and I hope it never happens to anyone - whew! It was sure a wake-up call for me, I'd give anything to know what I did to put myself in this predicament.

Goodness! And still no clue how?

Posted using Partiko Android

Nope, I have no idea where the attack came from. Makes it very scary.

Posted using Partiko Android

I wish this had existed when my first account was stolen in August 2017. At that time I sent messages to and they simply ignored me, they told me that it is my fault for not having kept my password well, nobody tried to help me, at that time I only had about 200SP and about 70 SBD but both currencies had value, the STEEM was about 2$ and the SBD a little over 1$ and was my only source of income at that time totally depended on steemit to survive, I felt that the world was coming on top of me.

But after so much anger, frustration, disappointment and sadness that steemit did not want to help me, I decided to open my new account and start from scratch and today I am recognized and have a good position in a large community like steemstem, I do not have savings in steem I have been forced to spend them by the current economic situation that I am living but things in the future will be very good in steem.

This is a big step for the chain of blocks that helps people recover their passwords and helping them in any problem is a big step towards the future.

I'm so sorry that happened to you in 2017 and you got no help. I know how utterly panicked I was and if it wasn't for my Powerhousecreatives community helping me get the ball rolling I'd never have been able to solve the mess so quickly.

Posted using Partiko Android

Sad you lost your STEEM & SBD but glad you gain back control of your account.

Your post triggered in me old emotions of having one's account stolen. I understand how you must a felt (kind of panic mode as you describe) because I had a similar experience at the beginning of the year. The difference being that for me it was only funds, not as personal as an account with blog posts, and that I luckily managed to get it all back.

Yours is the second post I read about the return of Steem accounts stealing, so I decided to finally share my own Tron scam story, even if it's not something to be proud about:

Posted using Partiko Android

@heroic15397 I'm sorry that happened to you! I lost some Tron myself about a year ago. It's so infuriating. I'm lucky that Steemit inc has that account recovery system and that I discovered it so quickly.

Posted using Partiko Android

Wow, that sucks but it sounds like you got most or all of it back? That would be great because most of the time when I see that someone has gotten hacked, they have lost it all. It's very bad that this happened to you and you aren't aware of anything you did that would kick it off.

It'll be really bad if someone can do this without us doing something first!

@free-reign - I lost everything I had that was liquid (both the STEEM and the SBD) but it's wasn't that much since STEEM is so low right now. It was my SP that they tried to power down that really freaked me out. I'm sure I must have done something - the alternative is too scary to contemplate! I just really can't remember clicking on anything and providing my key - I use keychain for everything.

It's still great to hear that you kept your SP! Do most people who are victimized usually hold on to the SP? It still has to sting, but if you have all your SP, it's awesome good news!

@free-reign - I don't know many people's stories about what happened to them, so maybe it was a good thing I wrote this one to tell about my experience. You'd only be able to hold on to your SP if you were able to recover your account. I was able to do that because of Steemit's Account Recovery tool and the fact that I had access to my owner's keys. If you couldn't get your account back, the thief would power down your SP, like they immediately did with mine, and just wait for it to get into the wallet, then steal it as well. Plus they would have continued to be able to steal all the earnings from my posts that came in after they had gained control. I know that a couple of other places that make accounts for you have recovery tools in place, but I don't know if they all do.

So glad you we're able to recover your account in less than no time, we should be very careful with links we're not familiar with. Have a good day @blueeyes8960!

@anonymousman1 - thanks for stopping by - being very very careful is absolutely important. From now on, it something asks for my key and it can't run through keychain - forget it.

Hi @blueeyes8960

That must be very stresful experience. However I'm not sure how could you wallet be empty if you had powered up your STEEM. Wallet cannot be "cleared" before powering down everything. And it takes weeks.

I tried logging in with my Master Owner's account, but nope, everything thing had been changed.

Oh shit. Even knowing your own master key didn't help ?

Glad to know you managed to get things on the right track! Upvote on the way. Catch :)

Yours, Piotr

@crypto.piotr - my SP was not gone, though they had started the power down - only my liquid STEEM and my SBD was transferred out to another account and stolen. If I hadn't gotten control back through Steemit they would have eventually been able to siphon it all out. So somehow they were able to change ALL my keys, even my master owner key. That's some scary stuff right there!
Thanks for stopping by and I appreciate the upvote and the comment!

Oh nooo! That is one of my worst fears. I don't have a large account but to me its everything. So glad you are back on solid ground.

Thanks @tamaralovelace - it was very scary. I hope it never happens to anyone else! No matter what size our account is, it matters to us! We worked hard for it.

Posted using Partiko Android

That is really heart-breaking to face like this incidence. This is lesson for everyone. We must be very careful about such phishing link. Wish you a rapid recovery

@hafiz - thyanks for you support and kind wishes. Hope no one else has to go through this, it's very scary.

Glad it was sorted that quickly and that everybody got behind you to get it sorted. I know it's not a fortune but our accounts mean so much more than the monetary value to us in the steem world. They represent all the time and effort put in to getting them to that level.

@niallon11 - you're exactly right - the money they managed to get wasn't that much but the violation of my account and both my Steem reputation and my own personal reputation was a huge deal to me. And it was a lot of working going back to over 70 comments and getting rid of their phishing scam message.

So sorry to hear about this! Makes my skin crawl to think about such a violation. Always awesome though to see how great the community is to come together to help our own! Glad that things were rectified so quickly and that you're back to posting again. :)

@planttoplanks - skin crawling is right! One of the worst feelings to be so violated and then see that garbage going out under my name and account. But the community real came through, which is why I wanted to do this big thank you post to them and Steemit Inc. Thanks for stopping by!

Bookmarked a few of the links here my friend.
Such a nasty experience and we feel for you.

@papilloncharity - I was happy to provide some lessons learned links - but I pray that you never need to reference them! Thanks for the blessings!

Thank you for the kindness my friend, but one never knows.
You have certainly learned an expensive lesson, but thankfully you are not the "giving up" type.
I admire the fact that you got going again right after the sordid event.
Blessings to you guys.

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Thank you @original.content!

What a nightmare. I read your post as if it were a Halloween horror story.. I'm glad for such prompt action from Steemit Inc. It must have felt like someone locking you out from your home. Thanks God everything is fine now!

Thanks for your support @bananfish! I guess it might have seemed like a fiction story at the start - I wish that it had been only fiction. And it did feel like a supreme personal violation. Steemit Inc really came through quickly, I'm so glad they have that Account Recovery option!

I'm still mad as hell that though that there are so many people out there ready to work hard at stealing other people's money when they could just work hard and make their own!

EXACTLY!! So sad that people put more effort into stealing form others than from making their own work and worth.
So glad to see so many PHC members helping you!

@goldendawne - there'll always be scoundrels I know, but it's nice to know that there are the good people - like you and my PHC community - around as well. Thanks for the support!

First I'm glad that steemit recovered your account. Some people just have no conscience about doing this kind of stuff. They never think about the feeling of those who works hard and just stolen their hardwork. People doing that are worst than scam. Why are they here in steem..
By the way always be safe.

Posted using Partiko Android

Glad to see you got your account back so quickly.
It's like being in hell, I know....

Howdy blueeyes8960! Wow! What a shocker. Steemit always seems to get people's accounts back when this happens though, thank goodness. I'm so glad that so many people jumped in to help! And thank you for the helpful links!

In a moment I feel very scared with your story and worry for the security of our efforts in this blockchain. Definitively is good to have a culture of self protection with our keys but is most important to know that is a great community and resources to help with the problems. I'm glad your account could be saved!! Thanks for the information!!
My best wishes for every project, @BlueEyes8960!!