If you see a tweet from a celebrity, company, or even a friend promising to double your bitcoin if you send them money, it’s a scam. That should go without saying, but Jeff Bezos, Joe Biden, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, the official Apple account, CoinDesk, and more sent out that exact tweet.
Elon Musk, Bill Gates and others have had their accounts hacked to push a cryptocurrency scam. pic.twitter.com/YmrCq5gvQW
— Martin SFP Bryant (@MartinSFP) July 15, 2020
We’re not sure exactly what’s going on here, because some of the affected accounts already confirmed they had two-factor authentication enabled. But earlier today, celebrity, politician, and company accounts starting tweeting out the same basic text:
“I’m feeling generous. I’ll double any BTC payment sent to my BTC address for the next hour.” Followed by a bitcoin address. Unfortunately, it does seem people are falling the for the scam and sending money to the account.
Twitter is already looking into the situation and seems to be deleting Tweets, but a Twitter search revealed more compromised accounts as of this writing. Bill Gates released a statement confirming he didn’t send out the tweet.
NEW — statement from a spokesperson for Bill Gates.
"We can confirm that this tweet was not sent by Bill Gates. This appears to be part of a larger issue that Twitter is facing. Twitter is aware and working to restore the account.” pic.twitter.com/v37Jvs76Jl
— Teddy Schleifer (@teddyschleifer) July 15, 2020
Twitter took the unusual step of preventing Verified Twitter accounts from tweeting briefly, though some accounts seemed unaffected. The company is also preventing password resets as an extra measure of security.
You may be unable to Tweet or reset your password while we review and address this incident.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) July 15, 2020
**Update: At 8:40 PM Eastern, our own Justin Duino found he could tweet again from his verified account.**
Can I tweet yet? (Attempt #8)
— Justin Duino+ (@jaduino) July 16, 2020
Although the attack focused on high profile accounts, you may want to keep an eye on your Twitter account in case it spreads. And as always, if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t true. That includes celebrities and companies deciding to hand out free bitcoin.
via Martin Bryant