Scammers have hacked Elon Musk’s account to swindle users, under the pretence that the Tesla CEO was conducting a huge Bitcoin giveaway.
The hackers posted that Musk was giving away 10,000 BTC which is worth around $64 million at the current valuation.
They included links with the posts that sent users to a webpage where they were asked to send anywhere between 0.1 BTC ($640) to one full Bitcoin ($6,400) with the promise they would receive a 10x return.
According to a couple of news outlets, at least $176,000 was scammed from unsuspecting victims.
You can trust us
The scheme was made to appear trustworthy with replies from other compromised accounts of users with lots of followers, including boxer Rayton Okwiri, blogger Sarah Scoop and Swansea City AFC Ladies.
British fashion retailer Matalan, film distributor Pathe and UK and US publisher Pantheon Books were also among those whose accounts were taken over.
The tweets have since been deleted and many of the accounts recovered. Some, however, remain blank, waiting for the official holders to re-enter their names and profile photos.
A Twitter spokesperson told the BBC it “doesn’t comment on individual accounts for privacy and security reasons”.
A similar scan was detected in March of this year when Musk’s name was used on fake Twitter accounts to ask for Bitcoin. In fact, scams became so frequent on Twitter that Musk himself was briefly banned from the social media network.