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UK Military’s Twitter and YouTube accounts hacked to advertise crypto scams

A screenshot of the British Military’s Twitter profile when it was hacked, through Wayback Machine. Its profile and banner photos have been modified to resemble a nonfungible token assortment referred to as “The Possessed.”

A hacker compromised the social media accounts of the British Military to push folks towards cryptocurrency scams.

The military’s Twitter and YouTube profiles have been taken over by the hacker, or hackers — the identification of whom shouldn’t be but identified — on Sunday. The Twitter account’s identify was modified to “pssssd,” and its profile and banner photos have been modified to resemble a nonfungible token assortment referred to as “The Possessed.”

The Possessed’s official Twitter account warned customers of a “new verified SCAM account” impersonating the gathering of NFTs — tokens representing possession of items of on-line content material.

Earlier Sunday, the account was renamed “Bapesclan” — the identify of one other NFT assortment — whereas its banner picture was modified to a cartoon ape with clown make-up on. The hacker additionally started retweeting posts selling NFT giveaway schemes.

Bapesclan did not instantly reply to a CNBC direct message on Twitter.

The identify of the UK navy’s YouTube account, in the meantime, was modified to “Ark Make investments,” the funding agency of Tesla and bitcoin bull Cathie Wooden.

The hacker deleted all of the account’s movies and changed with them with livestreams of outdated clips taken from a dialog with Elon Musk and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey on bitcoin that was hosted by Ark in July 2021. Textual content was added to the livestreams directing customers to Crypto rip-off web sites.

Each accounts have since been returned to their rightful proprietor.

“The breach of the Military’s Twitter and YouTube accounts that occurred earlier in the present day has been resolved and an investigation is underway,” Britain’s Ministry of Protection tweeted Monday.

“The Military takes info safety extraordinarily severely and till their investigation is full it will be inappropriate to remark additional.”

A Twitter spokesperson confirmed the British Military’s account “was compromised and has since been locked and secured.”

“The account holders have now regained entry and the account is again up and operating,” the spokesperson advised CNBC through electronic mail.

A YouTube consultant was not instantly accessible for remark when reached by CNBC.

Tobias Ellwood, a British Conservative lawmaker who chairs the protection committee in Parliament, mentioned the breach “appears severe.”

“I hope the outcomes of the investigation and actions taken might be shared appropriately.”

It is not the primary time a high-profile social media account has been exploited by hackers to advertise crypto scams. In 2020, the Twitter accounts of Musk, President Joe Biden and quite a few others have been taken over to swindle their followers of bitcoin.

— CNBC’s Lora Kolodny contributed to this report

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