Scammers are promoting a BitVex trading platform fraud that steals deposited funds by exploiting deep fake videos of Elon Musk and other notable cryptocurrency proponents.
This phoney BitVex bitcoin trading platform purports to be controlled by Elon Musk, who claims to have built it to allow anybody to make up to 30% returns on their cryptocurrency deposits.
Threat actors created or hacked into existing YouTube accounts earlier this month to broadcast deep fake films of Elon Musk, Cathie Wood, Brad Garlinghouse, Michael Saylor, and Charles Hoskinson.
These videos are real interviews that have been altered with deep fake technology to utilise the subject’s voice in a script written by the threat actors.
Below is an example of one of the scam films, in which Elon promotes the new fraud site and claims to have invested $50 million in it.
If you look closely, you’ll notice that the deep fake synchronises the person’s speech to the threat actor’s script, which is so ridiculous that it’s almost humorous.
How can we tell whether this is a con?
While it is clear that the interviews have been doctored to imitate Elon Musk’s voice in order to promote the BitVex trading platform, there are several additional signs that this is a ruse.
Many YouTube channels advertising this trading platform have been hijacked, causing YouTube videos or YouTube Shorts to appear on the site.
For example, a YouTube channel that mostly featured Arabic gaming videos began presenting a series of YouTube Shorts promoting the BitVex fraud. Moreover, BleepingComputer has discovered hundreds of additional YouTube channels that have been hacked in the same way to advertise this fraud.
When you visit the BitVex trading website, it becomes clear that this is a fraud.
For example, the site says that Elon Musk is the trading platform’s CEO and includes testimonials from Cathie Wood of Ark Invest and Changpeng Zhao of Binance.
To utilise the BitVex investing platform, users must first create an account at bitvex[.]org or bitvex[.]net.
After logging up, the site will show you a dashboard where you may deposit cryptocurrency, choose an investing plan, and withdraw your gains.
To make the site look real, the dashboard, like nearly other cryptocurrency frauds, would list recent withdrawals of various cryptocurrencies, as illustrated below.
Thankfully, the scam appears to be a failure, since just $1,700 has been sent to the scheme’s bitcoin addresses, according to BleepingComputer. However, because these addresses are likely to change, they may have taken more since the fraud began.
The following are some of the bitcoin addresses utilised in this scam:
Bitcoin – 16Ge7LhzpxHTSQLptSe4sptseVwDYU6gpN (Earned $1,280.82)
Bitcoin Cash – qpkrguy6ralp0pux390fr7pz2ugpq90s3uach9m42j
Ethereum – 0x1087d3584AB80df8d14B4D7d5A2091C3Bb55eF2F
Tether – TRh8zMBdcEEZdPBC6xkBmkd5SrpkRQEjWK
Dogecoin – DDu1kVvtd9bc4jQ1uY7EUBBddmzTgjbsav
Polkadot – 16keizqPvkS3uQ4Cad9vPNoQhbstKNqJtTG1Uk8i6mY8JNTL
While it may seem unlikely that anyone would fall for these schemes, threat actors have been known to make millions of dollars through fraudulent bitcoin giveaways and investment programmes.
A bogus Elon Musk crypto giveaway scam made $580k in one week in January 2021.
More recently, an Ark Invest-themed YouTube scam took $1.3 million by simply re-streaming a modified video of an old live panel discussion on cryptocurrencies with Ark Invest’s Elon Musk, Jack Dorsey, and Cathie Wood.
The FTC issued a study warning that $80 million has been lost to cryptocurrency investment scams since October 2020, indicating that they had become so widespread and successful.
As a result, it’s critical to understand that practically every cryptocurrency giveaway site is a ruse, particularly those claiming to be from Elon Musk, Tesla, SpaceX, Ark Invest, and Gemini and promising large profits.
Remember that any bitcoin you provide will not create anything in return if you see emails, tweets, videos, or other communications on social media advertising these sorts of contests.