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Twitter accounts of Apple, Musk, Gates hacked in bitcoin scam, over $10m reportedly stolen


The official Twitter accounts of Apple, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and others were hijacked by scammers trying to dupe people into sending cryptocurrency bitcoin in the hope of doubling their money.

Twitter posts, which have been deleted, were fired off from an array of high-profile accounts on Wednesday telling people they had 30 minutes to send $1,000 in bitcoin in order to be sent back twice as much.

“This is a SCAM, DO NOT participate!” Gemini cryptocurrency exchange co-founder Cameron Winklevoss warned in a tweet from his official account at Twitter.

“This is the same attack/takeover that other major crypto twitter accounts are experiencing. Be vigilant!”

Twitter investigating accounts

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Comments and posts at Twitter indicated thousands of dollars in bitcoin may have been sent to the scammers’ digital account.

Twitter said in an email that it was looking into the matter and would issue a statement shortly.

“We are aware of a security incident impacting accounts on Twitter. We are investigating and taking steps to fix it. We will update everyone shortly,” Twitter said.

Twitter is diagnosing the hacking problem and will share findings “when we have a more complete understanding of exactly what happened,” CEO Jack Dorsey said.

Scammers grab over $110,000 worth of cryptocurrency

Several accounts of cryptocurrency-focused organisations were also hijacked.

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Biden’s campaign was “in touch” with Twitter, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The person said the company had locked down the Democrat’s account “immediately following the breach and removed the related tweet.”

Tesla and other affected companies were not immediately available for comment.

Publicly available blockchain records show that the apparent scammers have already received more than $110,000 worth of cryptocurrency.

“It is an unprecedented attack,” Jeffrey Bishku-Aykul, a social media analyst, told TRT World.

Greg Evans of National Cyber Security Ventures told TRT World that the Twitter hacking of high-profile celebrities could be an inside job.

‘Worst hack’

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The cause of the breach was not immediately clear, but the unusual scope of the problem suggested that it was not limited to a single account or service.

While account compromises are not unusual, experts were surprised at the sheer scale and coordination of the Wednesday’s incident.

“This appears to be the worst hack of a major social media platform yet,” said Dmitri Alperovitch, who co-founded cybersecurity company CrowdStrike.

Alperovitch, who now chairs the Silverado Policy Accelerator, said that, in a way, the public had dodged a bullet so far.

“We are lucky that given the power of sending out tweets from the accounts of many famous people, the only thing that the hackers have done is scammed about $110,000 in bitcoins from about 300 people,” he said.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies