Meta chief Mark Zuckerberg stitched Instagram with a new Twitter-like platform called Threads last week. Within five days of launch, Threads is already becoming a hotspot for crypto scammers. Members of the global Web3 and crypto communities are posting alerts on various social networking platforms, warning unsuspecting victims against falling prey to financial risks being posed by these scamsters. Verified crypto profiles active on Twitter are reportedly being impersonated on Threads, garnering engagement from potential victims.
Wombex Finance, a DeFi platform recently announced to its 78,600 Twitter followers that it is being mimicked on the Threads platform. While details about who is running this fake account for Wombex on Threads remain unknown, the firm seems to believe it could be a dangerous scammer.
“Please be aware that the Wombex Finance does not have an account on the Threads platform,” the firm tweeted over the weekend sharing a screenshot of its fake Threads profile.
Crypto scammers have been known to fish for victims on popular social networking apps like Twitter, Instagram, Telegram, as well as LinkedIn.
Last year, the FBI had issued a formal alert for job seekers using LinkedIn against interacting with strangers, especially around the topics of finance and crypto. FBI's alert was triggered by reports that claimed that LinkedIn users collectively lost between $200,000 (roughly Rs. 1.5 crore) and $1.6 million (roughly Rs. 12 crore) owing to crypto scams by June last year.
Now, with Zuckerberg piggy-backing the Threads platform on Instagram's massive global userbase of reportedly 2.35 billion monthly active users, it seems rather predictable that crypto scamsters would wish to grow their presence on this new platform.
A popular name in the NFT community, Leonidas, who goes by the username @LeonidasNFT on Twitter, also shared with his 93,000 followers that he is among several big names in the community who are being impersonated on Threads.
Another affluent NFT community member, who goes by the Twitter username of @machibigbrother, also met a similar online fate, with his fake profile spotted on Threads over the weekend.
In the wake of these fake Web3 accounts being identified on Threads, community members have warned others against thoroughly verifying somebody's identity before engaging with them on the new platform.
Interacting with shady links promising crypto airdrops or giveaways could expose people to losing their crypto holdings.
As per Web3 security firm Beosin, total losses from hacks, phishing scams, and rug pulls in Web3 has already reached $655.61 million (roughly Rs. 5,420 crore) in the first half of 2023.
Phishing scams, that target victims by sending them e-mails or messages appearing to be from authorised sources, are the most common form of crypto scamming.
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