In recent times, TikTok has been inundated with a deluge of fake cryptocurrency giveaways that have proliferated across the video-sharing platform. These scams predominantly masquerade as themes related to Elon Musk, Tesla, or SpaceX. The allure of quick and easy cryptocurrency gains has made these scams a persistent and alarming threat.
This deceptive trend isn’t new. Threat actors have been orchestrating fake cryptocurrency giveaways on social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter for years. These scams cunningly pose as giveaways from celebrities and cryptocurrency exchanges, and, more often than not, impersonate Elon Musk or SpaceX. Threat actors now come up with new Elon Musk giveaway scams on popular social media.
The scammers go to great lengths, setting up numerous websites designed to mimic cryptocurrency exchanges or giveaway hubs. These faux websites entice users to create accounts, promising free cryptocurrency rewards. However, the reality is grim – these scams are nothing but elaborate traps that purloin deposited cryptocurrency, leaving users empty-handed.
Beware of the Elon Musk giveaway scams
The rise of TikTok’s popularity has provided scammers with a fresh and lucrative hunting ground. Fake cryptocurrency giveaways on TikTok are now a common sight.
Although TikTok says no more to deepfake content, these scams materialize in the form of videos, posted frequently, featuring deepfake clips of Elon Musk being interviewed on reputable networks, and endorsing counterfeit cryptocurrency giveaways.
You may see one of these Elon Musk giveaway scams in the TikTok video of .leo_fy below.
How does Elon Musk giveaway scams work?
Most of these Elon Musk giveaway scams lead users to websites with domains that bear a striking resemblance to legitimate ones, such as bitoxies[.]com, moonexio[.]com, altgetxio[.]com, and cratopex[.]com.
To partake in the promised giveaway, users are prompted to register an account and enter a promo code disclosed in the TikTok video.
Upon entering the code, the website feigns depositing Bitcoin into the user’s wallet, presenting an illusion of instant wealth.
However, to withdraw these purportedly “free” Bitcoins, users are coerced into activating their accounts by depositing a sum, such as .005 Bitcoins, approximately valued at $132. Predictably, this marks the point of no return, as the scammers abscond with these “activation” deposits.
To compound the predicament, victims are prompted to provide KYC (Know Your Customer) information, which could potentially be exploited by threat actors in attempts to breach legitimate cryptocurrency accounts.
Given the lucrative nature of these scams, they are unlikely to vanish anytime soon, and social media platforms will remain inundated with fraudulent giveaways.
To underscore the gravity of the situation, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a stark warning, disclosing losses of $80 million to cryptocurrency investment scams since October 2020. More recently, the Better Business Bureau sounded the alarm regarding cryptocurrency scams on TikTok.Advertisement