This Wednesday, around 130 different Twitter accounts posted tweets, and all tweets had the same goal. To scam the people seeing the tweet on their timeline. The accounts belonged to people and companies like Barack Obama, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Uber, Coinbase, Apple, Elon Musk and Binance.
While at first, it seemed, a malicious actor had gained access to the accounts by hacking the owners individually. It became apparent, due to the sheer size of the attack that this would have been impossible. Soon after this realization, the suspicion arose that the attacker would have had to be helped by an insider, most likely a Twitter employee with access to the platform's backend systems.
Twitter responded to the attack by blocking every verified user from posting tweets, this because only verified accounts had been targeted. A measure which has never been taken before by the social media platform.
All of the posted tweets informed the followers of the particular account that the owner wanted to do back something for its 'community'. The tweet stated that for every Bitcoin
sent, the sender would get double the amount of Bitcoin back. Even though the attack appeared to be well organized, took a lot of planning and reached a big group of potential victims, the reward is not that high. Blockchain analysis company Elliptic estimates that the attackers have received $ 120.000 in Bitcoin.
Two other blockchain
analysis firms, Chainalysis and CipherTrace confirmed that they had been contacted by the FBI which was launching an investigation into the attack.