Several verified Twitter accounts strangely began flooding responses from Elon Musk and his followers with Bitcoin spam on Saturday. The apparent hacks come just hours before Tesla CEO’s much-discussed hosting gig on Saturday Night Live.
Fraud tracker Malware Hunter Team shared a series of screenshots from verified Twitter accounts that appeared to have been hijacked in an attempt to defraud Musk’s fanboys. These included the official accounts of an Argentinian politician, a Korean civil rights group and a Paralympic athlete, among others.
In each case, the account changed its name to “SNL” and changed its profile picture to match that of the official Saturday Night Live Account. These modified accounts responded to Musk’s tweets inviting users to “join” a virtual event by clicking a link to receive 5,000 bitcoins, worth just over $ 295 million at the time.
The link leads to a post on Medium, a screenshot of which you can see below, from a user named Elon Musk who claims to be from the marketing department at Tesla HQ. Underneath an image of Musk, which advertises a “5,000 BTC giveaway,” are links to a “competition” website where users can allegedly win one of three cryptocurrencies – Bitcoin, Ether, or Dogecoin – for free. .
The links were all broken by the time we checked it out, but Business intern seems to have had better luck. On Saturday, he reported that the “competition” website included a Tesla logo and requests for users to send “0.02 to 5 BTC to the address below and collect 0.20 to 50. BTC! “
The crooks also responded to the official Twitter accounts of Tesla, SNL and this week’s musical guest Miley Cyrus with similar ads for the cryptocurrency scam. Among the list of hacked verified accounts was an Argentinian politician Jorge taiana, The Korean Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission (ACRC), jewelry and watchmaker Mouawad, professional wheelchair racer and Paralympic medalist Shelly woodsand the non-profit organization Hockey saves.
When contacted for comment on Saturday, a Twitter spokesperson said the company was looking into the matter. We also reached out to Malware Hunter Team and Tesla, but it should be noted that the latter hasn’t said much to the press since he dissolved its public relations department last october. Nonetheless, we will update this blog if we have a response.
As of Saturday afternoon, many hacked accounts appeared to be back to normal, although some were slower than others to change their profile and clear their post history. On Saturday afternoon, Woods’ profile picture is still the SNL logo, and CCRA’s response history displays multiple Bitcoin spam messages. We’ve captured one below, which includes a claim that users can earn 100 million Dogecoin by clicking on the link.
Dogecoin is a cryptocurrency token that started out as a meme and has since grown incredibly popular. Its value has climbed nearly 25,000% in the past six months according to CNBC, no doubt fueled in part by the drama of WallStreetBets and his investment frenzy. Musk, being the internet troll he is, tweeted several shouts at Dogecoin in recent weeks, generating even more hype and skyrocketing its value.
However, even if these hijacked accounts return tThe normal, After Carry on to appear on time, according to Malware Hunter Team. Whoever these hackers are, they seem determined to milk the hype around Musk’s SNL debuts as long as they can.
Musk will host SNL tonight at 11:30 p.m. ET. You can watch it on NBC website if you have a cable connection. For those of us who have cut the cord, NBC is broadcasting the show live internationally via YouTube. here.