Travel influencer says hacker stole his Instagram account and demanded ransom

A travel influencer says his Instagram page was recently hacked and held for ransom and wants his story to be a cautionary tale to others.

Claudio Copiano Jr., with his account globalvagabonds, shares his travel experiences around the world with his more than 28,000 followers.

The San Diego resident has traveled throughout the United States and 30 other countries so far, according to KGTV.

Copiano’s travel brand was compromised, however, after a hacker managed to break into his account and change the email address linked to the page.

“I clicked on ‘forgot my password,’ even though I know my password,” he said.

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After numerous failed attempts to log in, Copiano said he started to panic. Soon after, he received emails from someone claiming to have hacked his account and demanded $300 in Bitcoin in exchange for Copiano getting his account back.

He then reached out to Instagram dozens of times about the matter, but to no avail.

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“I got an email the first time from them saying that my account had been deleted and there was nothing that they could do,” Copiano said.

Luckily, after numerous attempts at sending security codes to access his Instagram page, Copiano eventually was able to log into his account – though he’s not sure how. He immediately changed his password.

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Copiano, who said he never paid the ransom, has a message for any other Instagram users who may find themselves in the same situation.

“You should never send money to a hacker,” he said, “because he’s not going to give you your account back.”

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