Facepalm: Seeing social media accounts hacked to promote crypto scams isn't something new, but it's pretty surprising to find a country's military arm fall victim to such a thing. Sadly for the British Army, that's the position it found itself in after the branch's YouTube and Twitter channels were compromised.
In a statement tweeted yesterday, the UK's Ministry of Defence Press Office said it was aware of a breach of the Army's Twitter and YouTube accounts and was investigating the matter. "We take information security extremely seriously and are resolving the issue. Until the investigation is complete it would be inappropriate to comment further," it wrote.
We are aware of a breach of the Army's Twitter and YouTube accounts and an investigation is underway.— Ministry of Defence Press Office (@DefenceHQPress) July 3, 2022
The Army takes information security extremely seriously and is resolving the issue. Until their investigation is complete it would be inappropriate to comment further.
The hackers who took over the Twitter account changed the name, bio, and cover photo. The bio read: "#1 metavesto clan on the ETH chain with multi-billion dollar experience. Powered by @chaintchlabs."
The perpetrators changed the pinned tweet to one that linked to a fake NFT minting website and retweeted various NFT giveaways and other non-fungible token-related posts.
courtesy of The Guardian
As per The Verge, the Army's YouTube channel was also hacked. All videos were removed, and the name and logo changed to match those of legitimate investment firm Ark Invest, which in no way has been implicated in the breach. Videos of old livestreams featuring former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, which were part of The B Word conference held by Ark Invest last June, were uploaded with overlays linking to crypto scams. The same technique was used in May, earning the scammers $1.3 million in 24 hours.
Once the army regained control of the accounts, it posted: "Apologies for the temporary interruption to our feed. We will conduct a full investigation and learn from this incident. Thanks for following us and normal service will now resume."
One of the most famous crypto-scam hijacks took place in July 2020, when the Twitter accounts of Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Apple, Bill Gates, Kanye West, Jeff Bezos, and others (more than 130) were taken over. Hackers promised that if someone sent them Bitcoin, they would send back double the amount—many people fell for it. Several individuals were later arrested in connection with the incident.