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Bitcoin Scams

Cyber Thieves Are Harvesting Bitcoin With Low-Cost Software

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Cyber thieves are using a low-cost software to ‘’harvest’’ bitcoin and other altcoins from the wallets all around the world as the security experts found in the latest reports we have in our Bitcoin scam news.

According to a report from the cybersecurity specialist ESET, a low-cost software or a piece of malware named Casbaneiro or Metamorpho is claiming a few victims in areas with large Portuguese or the Spanish-speaking populations including Brazil, Peru, Argentina, and Mexico but also the United States and Spain. ESET says that this malware is a typical Latin American banking Trojan that aims the banks and crypto services by using social engineering tactics and fake pop-up windows that lures victims into entering the new passwords and login details. The company says that there are four different strains of Casbaneiro that have been detected and have been in circulation since 2018 and all four share almost the same code.

The malware is being distributed through emails with links and attachments and once the code reaches the computers, it is able to collect the information antivirus software and OS version information and more. The malware provides hackers with backdoor access for emails and messenger applications such as Telegram. The company claimed for the crypto news:

 “[Casbaneiro] can take screenshots and send them to its server, simulate mouse and keyboard actions and capture keystrokes, download and install updates to itself, restrict access to various websites, and download and execute other executables.”

The company states that the Casbaneiro malware family is related to the Amavaldo another Trojan which targets Latin American online banking and cryptocurrency customers. The cyber thieves also use the on-going cyber-crime campaign named MasterMana Botnet which also targets the cryptocurrency wallets and the company stated that the campaign was first detected in December in 2018. Most importantly, the report claims that the cost to ‘’ deploy and maintain and the campaign was mostly nonexistent.’’ The previous versions included the Revenge Rat software and this Trojan is available online for free on multiple websites which brings the campaign operation price down to about $60. The company described the malware as ‘’old but still highly effective.’’

DC Forecasts is a leader in many crypto news categories, striving for the highest journalistic standards and abiding by a strict set of editorial policies. If you are interested to offer your expertise or contribute to our news website, feel free to contact us at editor@dcforecasts.com

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Bitcoin Scams

OneCoin Ponzi Scheme Used Fake Reviews On TrustPilot And Quora

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New research in the Bitcoin scams news conducted by the Digital Forensic Research Lab (DFRLab) shows that the notorious OneCoin Ponzi scheme used fake reviews on sites like TrustPilot and Quora in order to lure investors in.The report, published on January 29, shows that OneCoin received a lot of five-star reviews on TrustPilot after the media started negatively covering it starting from October 2019. We can also see that of the 579 TrustPilot reviews of OneCoin, even 90% were positive and about 400 of the five-star ratings were published in a single month. DFRLab also stated that the OneCoin Ponzi scheme received some one-star ratings but these were far outnumbered by the positive reviews.Researchers were unable to guarantee whether this issue is real - and whether the accounts posting the reviews were inauthentic or automated mostly because of TrustPilot's design. However, they said that their activity was suspicious and further noted the following:
“October 2019 spike in five-star ratings, however, indicated an abnormal influx of favorable reviews just as OneCoin’s public relations and legal woes mounted. The possibility remains that the influx for both ratings and reviews was organic, though the timing and extreme bias was highly suspicious.”
DFRLab also saw that there were many profiles praising the OneCoin Ponzi scheme on the question-and-answer platform Quora which as per the report, showed “inauthentic behaviour, such as no profile pictures, no biographical information, inconsistent posting times, and an exclusive interest in OneCoin-related discussions.”The researchers showed one profile in which the owner described herself as a "crypto expert and investor" but was active and only answered questions about OneCoin. This account was active from January to March 2018 and the peak activity was when OneCoin was most active among users.
“As OneCoin’s legal challenges mounted, the company’s pyramid marketing scheme garnered significant attention. Its digital marketing tactics, however, received considerably less scrutiny,” the report also reads.
For those of you who did not follow our cryptonews, OneCoin is one of the most well-known crypto scams. The official website only ceased operations in December last year, when the New York Southern Court granted a continuation in the lawsuit against the CFO of a private equity fund which was allegedly linked to the scam.
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Bitcoin Scams

The New Bitcoin Scam That Is All Over YouTube: Watch Out

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YouTube has always been a safe zone for people who want to watch videos and relax. As we have reported many times in our Bitcoin and altcoin news, it is also a platform where one can see a lot of educational, instructional and analysis-type of videos in the crypto markets. However, more and more media outlets are reporting about the new Bitcoin scam that is al over YouTube recently and was purportedly titled "“Binance CEO Does Bitcoin Giveaway,” or something similar in broken English.With over 2,000 live viewers, this scam makes people want to click and was purportedly being hosted on the Binance channel. However, the idea behind Binance doing a sudden giveaway of BTC on YouTube bugged many and led a lot of people to realize that it is actually among the latest Bitcoin scams.Clicking on this video would lead users to a video of one of Changpeng Zhao (founder and CEO at Binance) Q&A session in a Periscope split-screened with a Bitcoin address and its respective QR code. The description, on the other hand, comes with a promise from Binance to multiply the deposits of Bitcoin. From what can one see, this is an obvious scam.At the same time, however, many other similar scams are being run for both Ethereum and XRP. The new Bitcoin scam for Binance is just an example for this type - but there are a lot of scams related to ETH, XRP and even Tesla with their founders claiming to give out "free cryptocurrency."While it is hard to tell how many similar streams are out there, the new Bitcoin scam should serve as a warning for people. Unfortunately, as clear as it is that these are scams, people fall for them and a lot of these "giveaways" have managed to catch some cryptocurrency investors off guard.According to a Github linked shared on a Substack post from Matt Muller, some of the addresses that the scammers have been using received large sums of cryptocurrency from seeming victims. There are also many online reports on Reddit and YouTube of people sending funds to the addresses that scammers use in their videos.The bad thing is that once you send the funds, they are 99.99% gone - forever.
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Bitcoin Scams

Thai Lawyer Investigates Alleged Crypto Pyramid Scheme

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One Thai lawyer is in the focus of the latest cryptocurrency news for moving a case for an alleged crypto pyramid scheme to the country's Department of Special Investigation (DSI). The human rights lawyer represents victims of the alleged scheme and as The Bangkok Post reported, there are roughly 20 victims whose losses are alleged to total of 75 million baht (close to $2.5 million).Now, the victims are seeking to go beyond the investigations of local police in Thailand's Krabi province given the gravity of this case. The Thai lawyer is supporting them and moved the case to DSI, a department of the Thai Ministry of Justice which works independently of the Thai Royal Police force and is tasked with the investigation of "special cases." These include organized crime or cases tied to national security threats.As the report by the media outlet shows, the alleged pyramid scheme is dubbed "Khung Nong Cryptocurrency Trading," and has operated in Krabi in 2018. It offers promising returns of as high as 8% weekly and locals in the towns of Krabi, Yala, Pattani, Trang and Narathiwat are reported to have sold off assets such as private land, cars and motorcycles to raise the money for their investments.The scheme managed to draw in more victims between October 2018 and February 2019, and as the Thai lawyer says, it continued until the operator abruptly stopped paying out dividends. An investor named Noopad Wachedi said that she had sold her land to raise money needed to invest and that the check given to her by the Khung Nong Cryptocurrency Trading's operator subsequently bounced.Noopad claimed that her recruiter alleged her investment was being overseen by state officers. Another victim (her relative) also alluded to a series of alleged tricks that were used to deceive investors.Before this, in the fall of 2019 we reported in our Bitcoin scams news about a Bangkok police arrest of the 38-year old person who named himself "the cryptocurrency wizard" over his alleged role in a 500 million baht ($16.3 million) crypto exchange fraud. Previously, in 2018 another local figure and a Thai soap opera star named Jiratpisit Jaravijit was arrested for his role in the 797 million baht ($24.6 million) Bitcoin investment heist which he allegedly operated together with his siblings.
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Bitcoin Scams

Travelex Hackers Demand $6 Million Worth Of Bitcoin Ransom

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The Travelex hackers, or the attackers that hacked the foreign currency exchange company, demanded a payment of $6 million worth of Bitcoin after the hack and in the bitcoin news now, we take a closer look at the developments of the situation.The UK currency exchange platform Travelex was shut down due to a ransomware malware following a network breach. According to the BBC, the hackers launched the attack on New Year’s Eve and forced the company to power down the website and the systems entirely. The Travelex hackers hit the company when many of the staff members were away for the holidays. The platform has operations in about 30 countries with 1,200 branches across the world, most of which were forced to operate manually or to stop all services. A notice on the Travelex twitter feed stated that they took down the websites in order to ‘’protect data and prevent the spread of the virus.’’The reports add that the ransomware group called Sodinokibi was responsible for the attack and wanted the currency exchange to pay $6 million. some other reports say that the group specified Bitcoin as the method of payment through a website with a top-level domain that was registered in China back in 2019. Once they settled, the hackers agreed to provide the decryption tools to enable the IT staff of the company to disable the ransomware and to access their files again. The research showed that the prevalence of ransomware could have heavily impacted the prices of bitcoin in 2019.The reports also mentioned that the computers with confidential information such as clients' names and bank accounts had been infected by the malware by adding a random character string to the end of each encrypted file. Other UK based companies that relied on Travlex’s forex services including Barclays, HSBC, Virgin Money, Sainsbury’s Bank, First Direct and others have also been disrupted.Thousands of customers across the world were blocked from using the app and were unable to access the funds or to make transactions on the Travelex currency card. The group also known as REvil, offered criminal gangs to rent their ransomware for a cut of the profits. The ransomware note that was delivered to the platform read:
 “If you do not co-operate with our service – for us it does not matter. But you will lose your time and your data, cause just we have the private key. In practice, time is much more valuable than money.”
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