Crypto frauds have increased with the bull market, but criminals have discovered another platform to perpetrate their crimes. YouTube has always been a strong marketing and influencing tool in the industry, making it a perfect target for fraudsters. This time, fraudsters have discovered a new technique to separate victims from their money: hacked YouTube videos.
According to Tenable, the number of giveaway scams is on the rise. The prizes are promoted through videos broadcast on real YouTube channels that have been hacked.
Scammers have hijacked the accounts of many YouTube channels to advertise bogus prizes. Scammers use the images of famous persons in the sector to guarantee enormous profits in these giveaways. This follows the same pattern: the price of cryptocurrency rises, a newsworthy event occurs, and photographs of prominent individuals appear.
Scammers will typically release a video of an interview with a renowned individual, such as Elon Musk, Michael Saylor, or Vitalik Buterin, and, in some circumstances, attach a false tweet from these people’s Twitter handles advertising their giveaway. When combined with an increase in the price of an asset, these films form a flytrap for investors who place a high value on these powerful voices.
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One example was Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s appearance on Saturday Night Live. The market speculated that Musk would push the meme coin, causing it to reach a fresh all-time high.
Scammers took advantage of the excitement around the appearance and hacked accounts with millions of subscribers to carry out their scams. According to reports, fraudsters generated over $10 million in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Dogecoin giveaways focused around Musk’s SNL performance.
Given the quantity of money made from them, these scams have shown to be effective for fraudsters. Tenable describes a Bitcoin wallet that was utilized in one of the crypto frauds in the study. This fraud has used Michael Saylor’s name to promote a giveaway. The fraudsters offered to double the amount of Bitcoin transferred to a certain wallet.
Tenable researcher Satnam Narang discovered the bitcoin wallet with 41 BTC in it. However, on November 19th, this figure had risen to 132 BTC taken in the crypto fraud, totaling approximately $7.7 million at the time.
In October, a subgroup of these scammers made off with over $9 million in customer funds. Bitcoin accounted for the majority of this total, with more than $8.2 million taken in giveaway schemes. In October, scammers took $413,983 from Ethereum, while scammers capitalized from the Shiba Inu craze, stealing $239,346.