This most recent hack on Twitter is a curiously high-profile money flipping scam. It may encourage people to be more aware of online scams going forward.
Recently, unverified Twitter users were going wild with memes about how verified user accounts had been restricted after a handful of celebrity accounts had been hacked. Hours later it became clear that the hacks were part of a larger, much more sophisticated scam targeting profiles with trusted names.
How did the Twitter accounts of Elon Musk, Kim Kardashian, Changpeng Zhao, and countless other notable names and companies become victims of a coordinated attack that managed to swipe 12 BTC?
Revamping an Old Trick
The timeline of events and the public nature of the crime makes it easy to track the actions of the hackers on the fifteenth. Twitter accounts of popular celebrities, politicians, and well-known companies began posting tweets offering Bitcoin giveaways where they promised to double the number of coins to be sent to the included link address. Other accounts of prominent names in Bitcoin finance posted similar links to BTC giveaways.
An age-old trick, money flipping scams are a con many may be familiar with, one that involves someone asking for an initial monetary investment that they then promise to double or even triple. When people think of online scams, they might imagine easy-to-spot spam emails or suspicious downloads, but most online money flipping scams occur over social media.
This most recent hack on Twitter is a curiously high-profile money flipping scam and it may encourage people to be more aware of online scams going forward. But there is speculation that the combination of both the poor decision to lock the verified accounts after the fact in an attempt to lessen the impact of the posts as well as the lacking security on the social media site resulted in the perfect storm for the planned scam. As the story unfolds it may raise larger issues for major social media sites and pose more questions about what their responsibilities are to their users.
An Inside Job
Those examining the event say that the hackers most likely waited until they had control of many accounts and then made their move. And that control was widespread. So widespread that Twitter believes the hackers may have either been involved with or coerced employees of the social media site to gain access to administrative systems.
Social Media Security
Although the breach has brought media attention to both Bitcoin and Twitter, most of the negative judgment seems to be falling on the social media giant’s shoulders. Even among speculation that the hacker may have been using admin keys to gain widespread control over certain verified accounts, some users have spoken out about the short-sighted security options on the site.
For instance, the two-factor authentication, or 2FA, system that users have the option of using was implemented recently. This form of authentication adds another level of protection, but Twitter…