A sophisticated ETH giveaway scam was attempted this evening. The hook was an old trope: send-crypto to an address and get double the crypto back. The sophistication comes with how the scam was presented.
A YouTube channel called “Etherium Blockchain” with 65.5k subscribers appeared in my recommended feed with a live stream featuring Vitalik Buterin speaking about Etherium at a conference. Supposedly 62k viewers were tuning in (likely bots inflating numbers). The video was embedded with a still describing a “50,000 ETH Giveaway” where you could send a minimum of 3ETH to an address and get back double the amount. Chat was disabled, so you could not discuss the legitimacy of the “giveaway”.
In the video there was a link to a website linked called “event-eth.info,” a domain registered by “Afilias Limited” of Dublin, Ireland. The tidy website explains the giveaway and presents a time-imperative: “45,678 ETH of 50,000” already have been given away! It is complete with a spoofed listing of purported transactions showing wallets getting their double ETH rewards immediately after sending their ETH to the address.
While the concept of sending crypto somewhere and trusting the sender will send more back your way seems ludicrous, the ability to launch the scam video under the brand of a seemingly legitimate Etherium YouTube channel featuring a a large number of subscribers and viewers with a “live stream” of Vitalik was enough to catch people out.
Before the video could be reported and taken down, two members of the community sent 3TH each, netting the scammer(s) approximately $1,500.
Edit: In the time since posting this, the scammers have received an additional 23 ETH netting them $7,250.