It’s only a week before Christmas, and the holiday promotions have started. Riding on the wave, the scammers started promoting fake sweepstakes, a type of scam that promises to give away bitcoin to users.
Michael Saylor, the CEO of MicroStrategy, Bitcoin’s biggest institutional whale, is a household name in the cryptocurrency market, which is why scammers use his name to promote scams.
In “free bitcoin” scams, criminals often pose as a well-known figure and run deceptive campaigns that offer double all the bitcoins sent to them.
Bitcoin is good
It goes without saying that whoever sends bitcoins to the scammers’ address does not receive twice as much, on the contrary, they lose every amount sent. And one victim in particular drew attention when sent two bitcoins worth nearly $100,000 to the address associated with the scam.
The coup is being perpetrated through Youtube. The unsuspecting victim finds a link in the video or on Twitter saying “Michael Saylor: It’s time to go all in! Bitcoin will hit $120K!”.
By clicking on the link, victims are redirected to a youtube channel named “MicrostrategyUS” which has just a video showing Saylor talking about Bitcoin.
Although Michael has yet to comment on the matter, interestingly, the coup “event” began to circulate minutes after Saylor announced he would discuss bitcoin at an event on Thursday, giving the scammers a veil to apply the coup.
The video has had over 2.5 million views since the channel was registered in 2006 – yes, you read that right – 3 years before the invention of Bitcoin. And here’s where the key is, scammers steal old channels and begin to apply the scam, redirecting users to another pseudo site that talks about an event that will reward participants with cryptocurrencies.
To participate in such event, users are instructed to send between 0.1 to 30 bitcoins, or 0.5 to 500 Ethereum to the addresses provided and scammers undertake to send double the amount sent. The site even displays “live” transaction data to gain more trust from victims.