The scam sees nefarious users making Twitter handles that are very close to legitimate and well-known Twitter users. The scammer then responds to one of the real poster's tweets to give the appearance that they started the thread. The scammer then puts up a tweet offering to provide a Bitcoin "reward" to anyone who sends a smaller amount of cryptocurrency to a specific wallet.
Shockingly, people are falling for the scam, and then the scammer is reaping all the Bitcoin sent to the wallet without paying anything out. One of the scams impersonated Elon Musk and with his oddball persona it might be easy for some to see Musk giving away Bitcoin. You can see one of the tweets posted that impersonate Musk below.
"It's like a social media impersonation mixed with a classic Nigerian prince scam," says Crane Hassold, a threat intelligence manager at the security firm PhishLabs. "Twitter will likely start blocking the accounts making the posts, but the level of effort needed for this scam is so low that it'll probably be a cat and mouse game, and the return on investment at the beginning will be pretty good for the actor."
Another of the scam tweets cited by Wired offered 20 Bitcoin for every 0.02 received. Wired says the wallet used received 0.184 bitcoin within hours, raking in about $1,500 (at the time) for the scammers. Be safe out there folks, and if if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.