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In a nutshell: It’s not just hackers who target cryptocurrency fans; scammers are also a common threat for those that like to invest in digital currency. A new phishing campaign uses the Amazon name and a fake news report to try and trick people into handing over cash or crypto for a token that doesn’t exist.
Researchers from Akamai Technologies (via ZDNet) highlighted the campaign. It begins with social media posts targeted at groups interested in all things crypto-related. Clicking on one of the posts' links directs to a fake website called "CNBC Decoded" that shows an article claiming the Amazon Token presale is coming.
The fake site is only visible for 30 seconds, enough for someone to skim through without flagging it as a fake, before it redirects to the Amazon Token project website, which, of course, isn't a real thing.
Don't be fooled (credit: Akamai Technologies)
Interested buyers can register for an account on the fully functional 'Amazon Token' page. It requires an email confirmation, making the site appear more authentic, and comes with a fake progress bar suggesting the tokens are close to selling out, triggering a victim’s FOMO and pressuring them into handing over their payment details. There's even a friends and family referral program for snaring more people.
The site uses a captcha-style challenge to filter out bots and web crawlers looking for malicious content while also adding to its apparent legitimacy.
Akamai reports that 98% of people who visited the fake crypto landing page were mobile users, most of whom came from North and South America and Asia. The firm has reported its findings to Amazon, which has never announced any plans for its own digital coin.