On August 23, a hacker broke into Elon Musk’s official Twitter account and started promoting giveaways involving bitcoin and ether to his millions of followers.
The official Twitter account of Tesla’s CEO was hijacked on Thursday by a fake account. The copycat account seemingly had a blue check mark and started tweeting to his 22.5 million followers that he was giving away free cryptocurrencies.
“As many of you know by now, we will soon be making Tesla, a private company. It is an important step towards stability, and it would be impossible to move forward in a desirable pace without making such decisions,” posted the scammer in Musk’s name on his Medium blog.
“As a part of reorganization we will be introducing Bitcoin and Ethereum as official payment methods,” adding that “it is one of the steps in moving forward as a company.”
The real Musk made a post on Twitter at 3:30 in the morning, just a short time before the fake Twitter verified account started posting in his thread line.
“Love born in the brain is more spirited, doubtless, than true love, but it has only flashes of enthusiasm; it knows itself too. Well, it criticizes itself incessantly; so far from banishing the thought, it is itself reared only upon a structure of thought,” tweeted the real Musk.
The CEO of SpaceX and Tesla has been the target of similar scam bot attacks on his Twitter account many times before. Just like in the case of this attack, fake verified accounts were used to trick his followers into sending to the scammers cryptocurrencies like BTC and ETH.
“I want to know who is running the Etherium spambots! Mad Skillz,” tweeted Musk on July 8th.
Twitter immediately responded to the hack and released a statement in which it said that it will be looking for solutions to solve this problem.
“We’re aware of this form of manipulation and are proactively implementing some signals to prevent these types of accounts from deceptively engaging with others,” read the statement.
In spite of its media exposure, the attack on Musk’s Twitter came as no surprise, as he previously mentioned on August 7 that he was thinking of making Tesla private, stating that the funds required for this were “secured.” Some financial analysts assessed that the funds needed for this would be around $70 billion.
After the tweet was made, Tesla shares immediately went up by nearly 11 percent. However, they went down a great deal after Musk’s interview with the New York Times, in which he discussed his “excruciating times” at Tesla.