On July 15, the mass hack started with Elon Musk ’s Twitter account tweeting out a message to send him bitcoin at a particular address with the promise he’d send it back with double. Soon Kanye West, Bill Gates, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Barack Obama, Ye’s wife Kim Kardashian, Joe Biden and more, sent out a similar message, as well as the official accounts for Uber, CashApp and Apple.
Their official accounts requested donations in the cryptocurrency.“Everyone is asking me to give back,” said a tweet from the account of Mr Gates, the Microsoft founder. “You send $1,000, I send you back $2,000.”
While it may sound ridiculous that anyone would be fooled into sending bitcoin in response to these tweets, an analysis of the BTC wallet promoted by many of the hacked Twitter profiles shows that over the past 24 hours the account has processed 383 transactions and received almost 13 bitcoin — or approximately USD $117,000.
Tough day for us at Twitter. We all feel terrible this happened.
We’re diagnosing and will share everything we can when we have a more complete understanding of exactly what happened.
💙 to our teammates working hard to make this right.
— jack (@jack) July 16, 2020
Twitter acted quickly and sent out a message letting users know they were working on it, but simultaneously issued a tweeting ban on all verified accounts as they fixed the issue. “We are aware of a security incident impacting accounts on Twitter,” the company wrote in a tweet. “We are investigating and taking steps to fix it. We will update everyone shortly. You may be unable to Tweet or reset your password while we review and address this incident.”