Be wary 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 the Vice motherboardIn a surprisingly widespread Bitcoin scam, hackers are forcing Instagram users to film “hostage-style videos”.
Victims usually fall into the trap by clicking on what looks like a harmless Instagram link, but is actually a means for the hackers to gain access to their accounts.
New Bitcoin Mining Scam Holds Users Hostage
Vice’s report describes the experience of Instagram user Emma Zoller, who was targeted by a hacker with the online name “Ashly”. Zoller clicked on a link that led to a page disguised as an Instagram login window. When filling out her details, she unwittingly gave out her ID and password.
The hacker’s first step was to tell Zoller that she could get her account back in exchange for a nude video. When Zoller refused, Ashly instead ordered her to promote her Bitcoin mining scam in a video clip.
In the video (see below) Zoller says, “Hey guys, I just got back from a long day at work, but Ashly just helped me invest $ 1,000 and got me back $ 8,500. What an amazing way, end the day and I feel so blessed and grateful for the process. It’s guaranteed. I suggest doing it. “
Unfortunately and somewhat predictably, after Zoller posted the video, the hacker refused to give back access to their account and they were able to hack into their Venmo account as well. Zoller’s video was then advertised via an Instagram story.
“People lose their pages, their money and their identity”
Another victim of a similar scam, Tim Nugent, told Vice that a hacker gained access to an Instagram account for his 13,000 follower Etsy business. He was also forced to create a scam video that got rich quick, and one of his clients was subsequently “bled to death” by the scammer.
Nugent said the experience was “ruining”. [his] Reputation and business. ”Additionally, Nugent said that“ Instagram / Facebook [have] was of no help and didn’t report me back while people lose their pages, money and identity. “
In another cryptocurrency scam this month, a new cryptocurrency SQUID, based on the hit Netflix series Squid Game, made a meteoric rise after its creation, only its creator turned the currency off days later and apparently disappeared.
Instagram strongly recommends users to use two-factor authentication to make it harder for hackers to access and keep an account. The company owned by Meta (formerly Facebook), also urges users not to use the same password on multiple different platforms and accounts as this makes it much easier for hackers to access.