• Mon. Aug 21st, 2023

Crypto Investors Lose Nearly $6.5 Million in Scam Token Giveaways

Aug 2, 2023
Crypto investors were defrauded of approximately $6.5 million through deceptive online token giveaways orchestrated by scammers
Marcel Bich

Researchers from AegisWeb3 found that since August 2022, bogus token giveaways have cost cryptocurrency investors around 3,232 ETH (or about $6.4 million). A total of 14,605 people unwittingly gave fake smart contracts authorization to withdraw money from their wallets when they were trying to buy tokens.

One particular address managed to defraud more than 2,130 investors, resulting in a total of 302 ETH being stolen. However, this is not the highest amount of capital stolen. Another unidentified attacker successfully swindled investors out of 1,024 ETH (~$1.8 million).

On-chain analyst ZachXBT previously discovered that a single address created 114 counterfeit meme-coins, leading to almost $1.8 million in losses for investors. Later, the cryptocurrency community learned that the individual in question stored the ill-gotten funds on the KuCoin cryptocurrency exchange.

KuCoin officials admitted possession of the wallet referenced in the tweet in answer to media questions. The exchange stated that it was hesitant to instantly block the account, especially in the face of possible fraud. According to Johnny Liu, the CEO of KuCoin, the exchange would only cooperate upon a request from law authorities. Uncertainty surrounds the reasoning for KuCoin’s propensity to safeguard suspect clients.

Our editorial staff previously covered a fraudulent version of the HitBTC cryptocurrency exchange that scammed investors out of almost $15 million. Blockchain company SlowMist estimates that the attackers took a variety of cryptocurrencies, including Ether (ETH), Bitcoin (BTC), the stablecoin Tether (USDT), and other altcoins.

In order to steal cryptocurrency from unwary investors, the designers of the bogus clone came up with a complex system of traps. For instance, if a victim linked a third-party wallet through a browser extension, the website would ask authorization to withdraw USDT.

The fake website’s user interface was also very similar to that of HitBTC. Unbeknownst to the victims, the offered deposit address belonged to the con artists, and they were instructed to deposit money into an exchange balance using it. The phony HitBTC replica’s deposit address, according to SlowMist, only accepted BTC, ETH, and TRON.