Hackers attacked a number of popular cryptocurrency YouTuber accounts at some point during the afternoon of January 23rd. These accounts posted unauthorized videos with text urging viewers to send money to the hacker’s wallet.
Accounts that appear to have been attacked include: “BitBoy Crypto”, “Altcoin Buzz”, “Box Mining”, “Floyd Mayweather”, “Ivan on Tech” and “The Moon” among others.
BREAKING: The accounts of dozens of cryptocurrency YouTubers have been taken over by hackers promoting a fake cryptocurrency giveaway scam. Hacked accounts include: @IvanOnTech@boxmining@aantonop@themooncarl@Bitboy_Crypto@mmcrypto@Altcoinbuzzio@FloydMayweather@crypto_banter@CoinMarketCap pic.twitter.com/ykXkZUh9cO— Mr. Whale (@CryptoWhale) January 23, 2022
The Binance Smart Chain wallet address featured in the scam videos has only had 9 BNB transactions at the time of writing, totaling around $850.
Michael Gu told Cointelegraph that his Boxmining YouTube channel posted the video without his permission. “Fortunately, we noticed this within two minutes of the video going live and removed it,” he said. “By that time, there were already views and comments from my community.”
He added that he ran an internal check and found no viruses or bugs that could give hackers access to his account. “It looks like YouTube may be responsible for this,” he said.
Many cryptocurrency youtubers (myself included) got hacked today – all posted a scam video around the same time – @IvanOnTech @aantonop @Bitboy_cryptocurrency @Altcoinbuzzio @FloydMayweather @crypto_banter @CoinMarketCap I have two factor authentication enabled.pic.twitter.com/c8z5qmJ3bT — Boxmining (@boxmining) January 23, 2022
One Reddit post from user “9Oh8m8” states that the hackers were able to gain access to accounts through a SIM-swapping scam, which would allow them to bypass two-factor authentication (2FA). They added:
“They publish everything with a headline like “ONE WORLD CRYPTOCURRENCY”. They have an address in the video and a description to send your USDT/USDC/BNB/ETH to receive a new cryptocurrency called OWCY.”
However, Gu was unsure if the hack was the result of a SIM spoof and told Cointelegraph that his personal Google account did not have a login. “If it was a SIM replacement, I would have lost access to my phone, etc., and this did not happen,” he said.
“What we noticed is that the BRAND account (which does not have a login. YouTube brand accounts are linked to personal) had a login from the Philippines. Most likely, this is either a hack on the side of YouTube, or a fraudulent employee. That’s how they got so many people at once.”
Altcoin Buzz YouTube channel founder and CEO Shash Gupta added that they noticed something amiss around 1am Singapore time on Sunday night when an unauthorized video was posted to their channel.
“It’s pretty unclear what happened. I am talking to Youtube to look into this matter and avoid further violations.”
Related: YouTube Channels Hacked and Renamed to Live Stream Cryptocurrency Scam
Another cryptocurrency YouTuber, Richard Hart, tweeted at 21:30 UTC that his channel was blocked in the middle of a live broadcast, indicating that YouTube was likely aware of the event.
Hello again @YouTubecreators My channel just got banned during a live stream. I think it might be related to all the other youtubers who got hacked at the same time today. Could you please check, thanks! @YouTube @YouTube – Richard Hart PulseX.com!Bitcoin Top Named!(@RichardHeartWin) January 23, 2022
Cointelegraph has reached out to YouTube and a number of other cryptocurrency content creators who have been affected by the hack, but have not received any further information at the time of writing.