Twitter’s Recent Bitcoin Scam Breach Might Be Indicative of a Recurring Issue

A couple of days ago, Twitter ended up seeing a pretty serious security breach. The accounts of some pretty highly visible people from Apple Inc. all the way to Bill Gates ended up being compromised and they were used to try and spread a bitcoin scam. This was a pretty big deal due to the reason that accounts that are this famous and that have a visible verification tick on them are often widely trusted by the public, so even if people see something that seems a little bit suspicious from these accounts they might be willing to suspend their disbelief to a certain extent and make it so that they trust whatever the owner of this account appears to be saying.

This is dangerous due to the reason that people can end up falling for serious scams, and this is why Twitter limited the features that were available to verified accounts when this hack occurred. However, while Twitter can be commended for taking fast action in this regard, it’s fair to say that this is not a new occurrence for the social media platform. Cryptocurrency scams happen quite often on Twitter, and while this might be the most visible hack in recent times, these hacks have still been quite a common problem.

Back in 2018, a lot of verified accounts were hacked in a similar scam that was trying to trick people into giving up their cryptocurrency. This included the account of a Channel 4 journalist, and those scams usually used Elon Musk’s name in order to give themselves some legitimacy. The latest scam that happened on Wednesday used several big names including Barack Obama and Jeff Bezos, in order to get themselves some legitimacy making this sort of thing another common trend.

A lot of people have criticized Twitter’s approach to dealing with this issue as being reactionary. Some such as the Vitalik Beurin, the founder of cryptocurrency Ethereum, have called for Twitter to change its system so that such scams can no longer end up being as common as they currently are. Until and unless Twitter makes some changes or takes some major steps in order to decrease the prevalence with which such things would end up becoming as common as they are right now, most users would be wary while using the platform which is the sort of thing that would probably cause problems for the platform down the line.

Photo: Josh Edelson / Getty Images

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