- Hackers took over dozens of high-profile Twitter accounts Wednesday and used them to post messages urging people to send thousands of dollars in Bitcoin.
- The scam began when several high-profile cryptocurrency Twitter accounts were compromised and posted malicious links.
- Accounts including Uber, Apple, Cash App, Bill Gates, Kanye West, and Elon Musk — apparently compromised by hackers — posted Tweets claiming they would double people’s contributions of $1,000 in Bitcoin.
- The Bitcoin account linked in the scam tweets appears to have racked up over $100,000 within an hour of the tweets being posted.
- A Twitter spokesperson told Business insider the company is “looking into this.”
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Several high-profile Twitter accounts appear to have been hacked Wednesday as part of a cryptocurrency scam, including Uber, Apple, Square’s Cash App and billionaires Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and Elon Musk, as well as numerous cryptocurrency exchanges and news sites.
The accounts posted messages urging their followers to send $1,000 in Bitcoin to a specific address, promising to double the contributions in return. The messages appear to employ a common scam tactic used to fleece people out of money by falsely promising to send a bigger sum in return for a payment.
Several of the scam tweets were deleted shortly after they were posted, only to be reposted minutes later.
A Twitter spokesperson told Business Insider that the platform is “looking into” the apparent scam activity.
The messages were posted after several high-profile cryptocurrency companies’ Twitter accounts posted malicious links, including KUCOIN, Binance, and Gemini, as noted by the MalwareTech blog.
—MalwareTech (@MalwareTechBlog) July 15, 2020
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao tried to warn his followers that the tweets were a scam shortly after they were posted, according to CoinDesk — but his account was apparently also compromised, and hackers quickly hid the warning.
CoinDesk’s Twitter account was also compromised. The outlet said that it had multifactor authentication enabled on its account, meaning hackers were able to breach both the account and a secondary device linked to the account.
Bitcoin transaction receipts show that the address listed in the scam tweets has received more than 11 Bitcoin — or roughly $101,300 — but it’s possible that some or all of transactions were carried out by the scammers to make their account appear more legitimate.
This story is developing.
Here’s every Twitter account that appears to have been hacked so far: