Hackers carried out a coordinated attack on Twitter accounts belonging to high-profile public figures and conglomerates. Victims of the attack include Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Kanye West, Apple, and Twitter itself.
It was apparently a cryptocurrency scam in which hackers tried to siphon donations in digital money from the official accounts of prominent figures.
Hackers made it seem like the elite figures have grown some consciousness and decided to do something for general public
Hacked Twitter Accounts Have Been Restored
Compromised accounts claimed to return double the amount given as donations to reel in their millions of followers. Hackers asked to transfer cryptocurrency to a certain digital wallet for which the link was also given.
The hack continued for several hours due to which Twitter had to take unprecedented measures. It made all verified accounts (blue ticks) inactive and also locked the compromised ones.
Twitter said that the coordinated attack targeted its employees who had access to internal systems. The company also stopped entertaining password reset requests and disabled many functions of the accounts.
The company restored most accounts with a warning that some may act up again. The social website has assured that of further investigation and also restricted access to internal systems.
CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey tweeted:
Whose Accounts Were Hacked?
Here is the list of all VIPs who were targeted for this scam:
Bill Gates (Microsoft Co-Founder)
Warren Buffet (Investor)
Elon Musk (CEO – TESLA, SpaceX, The Boring Company)
Barack Obama (Ex-US President)
Joe Biden (Presidential Candidate – Democratic)
Jeff Bezos (Amazon CEO)
Kanye West (Hip Hop/Rap Singer)
Kim Kardashian (TV Personality, Kanye’s Wife)
Wiz Khalifa (Gangster Rap Singer)
Floyd Mayweather (Boxer)
Mike Bloomberg (Media Giant)
CZ Binance (CEO of Binance – Cryptocurrency Exchange)
TRON Foundation (Non-Profit Organization)
KUCOIN (Cryptocurrency Exchange)
Cash App (Mobile Payment Service)
Uber (Ride-Share App)
Apple (iPhone manufacturer)
According to BBC, a hacker used ‘email@example.com’ to register a website named cryptoforhealth.com. Some compromised tweets directed users on this website. Cryptoforhealth is also on instagram that may have claimed responsibility for this attack.
They posted a picture in which codes were raining down on the logo of Twitter
Moreover, their page description says “it was us” followed by a slightly smiling face emoji.
One of their previous posts said that it was a charity attack and the public’s money will find its way to the right place. No details were given and the post was deleted some time later.
Why Did This Happen?
According to cryptocurrency news, scams like this have been occurring on Twitter for years but it happened for the first time on such a large scale. It was imminent that VIP personalities that have most twitter followers would have been targeted for this scam. It implies that the problem persists with the social media platform of Twitter. It allowed someone to steal some administration privileges and bypass the security passwords of these billionaires and giants.
It is surprising that after having so much power, the hackers could have done much worse like damaging the reputation of targeted entities. Therefore, hackers’ motive can be concluded as a desire to generate as much money as they can. They would have been aware that the tweets won’t stay up for long so did decided to pull off a quick smash-and-grab.
According to publicly available blockchain records, more than 100,000 USD have been transferred to the mentioned wallet link in a short span of time.