A bitcoin user on Saturday lost $1,14 million to online scammers posing as MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor.
The user sent the equivalent of 26,4 bitcoins (BTC) to an address that has been confirmed by crypto tracking service Whale Alert as a scam.
Whale Alert says “This scam received the largest payout ever for a fake gift. We suspect this payment was made through a Coinbase address.”
The scam happened through the ms22 page and on YouTube. The YouTube channel was later taken down and the website inaccessible.
26,4 BTC was sent to the scam address over five transactions.
Massive bitcoin scam
Scammers impersonate celebrities like Michael Saylor to trick people into sending them bitcoins. They promise to return double the amount deposited by investors.
Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy, is a big supporter of bitcoin. As of August 8, his company bought 2020 BTC – the largest holdings of any public company. BTC holdings are currently worth $124.391 billion.
Responding to the Whale Alert announcement, Saylor said:
“[At least] 489 scams were launched on YouTube last week. We report them every 15 minutes and they get taken down every few hours, but the scammers just roll out more.”
Here's the latest Saylor-related fake gifting scam. In November, someone sent almost 11 BTC ($3), to another giveaway scam impersonating the head of MicroStrategy.
Scammers don't just pretend to be Saylor. They also impersonate Tesla CEO Elon Musk as well as government agencies or famous businesses.
Whale Alert says it tracks 9.214 phishing websites and 92.955 scam crypto addresses. To date, they have tracked over $803 million in stolen digital assets worldwide.