Beware of social media videos promoting bitcoin investments that seem too good to be true, even if they were recorded by someone you know and trust.
According to a new report from Vice motherboard, hackers are forcing Instagram users to shoot “hostage-style videos” as part of a surprisingly widespread bitcoin scam.
Victims usually fall into the trap of clicking on what appears to be a harmless Instagram link, but it’s actually a means for hackers to gain access to their accounts.
A new bitcoin scam is holding consumers hostage
The report from Deputy describes the experience of Instagram user Emma Zoler, who was targeted by a hacker using the online name “Ashly”. Zoller clicked on a link that led to a page disguised as an Instagram login window. When she filled in her details, she unknowingly passed on her ID and password.
The hacker’s first step was to tell Zoller that he could get his account back in exchange for a nude video. When Zoller refused, Ashley ordered her to promote their fraud by digging for bitcoin in a video instead.
In the video (see below), Zohler says, “Hey, guys, I just got back from a long day, but Ashley helped me invest $ 1,000 and gave me back $ 8,500.” What an amazing way to end the day and I feel so blessed and grateful for this process. It’s guaranteed. I suggest you do it. “
Unfortunately, and somewhat predictably, after Zoller posted the video, the hacker refused to regain access to her account, and they also managed to hack her Venmo account. Zoller’s video was subsequently promoted via Instagram Story.
“People are losing their pages, money and identity”
Another victim of such fraud, Tim Newgent, said Deputy that a hacker has gained access to an Instagram account for his Etsy business, which has 13,000 followers. He was also forced to create a video about a fraud for getting rich quick, and one of his clients was subsequently “bled” by the fraudster.
Nugent said the experience was “devastating.” [his] reputation and business. “Moreover, Nugent said that” Instagram / Facebook [have] I didn’t have any help and they didn’t contact me, and in the meantime people are losing their pages, money and identity. “
In another cryptocurrency scam this month, a new cryptocurrency, SQUID, based on the hit Netflix Squid Game series, made rapid growth since its inception, only to allow its creator to close the currency days later and seemingly disappear.
Instagram strongly encourages users to use two-factor authentication to make their accounts much harder for hackers to gain and maintain account access. The company owned by Meta (formerly Facebook), also urges people not to use the same password on several different platforms and accounts, as this makes it much easier for hackers to gain access.