Although Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency scams are nothing new, it remains to be seen how scam artists are still able to successfully extort funds from unsuspecting victims in the most obvious of manners. In the latest scheme to be doing the rounds, a newly created ‘Bitcoin Generator’ has thus far managed to scam people out of the Bitcoin equivalent of $2,700, or 0.8 BTC.
The Scam, which is located at the website domain ‘bitcoin-generator-2018.bid’, was recently tested by cryptocurrency news platform CCN, to ensure that their suspicions were factual. The platform explains that those behind the scam claim that they have created a protocol that allows their system to effectively hack the Bitcoin blockchain. In doing so, they are able to obtain quantities of free Bitcoin, which they can then forward on to the user.
If it’s too Good to be True, Then it Probably is
First and foremost, it must be noted that in order to access the aforementioned illicit platform, users must approach search engines with specific terms such as ‘Bitcoin Generator’ or ‘Free Bitcoin’. In this sense, it could be argued that the mindset of the user is to obtain Bitcoin(s) without having to pay for them, or receive significantly more than they outlay.
Once the ‘bitcoin-generator-2018.bid’ domain is accessed, the user is then asked to enter the personal Bitcoin address that they want the generated coins to be sent to. Next, the user is then afforded the fictitious luxury to enter the amount of BTC they want to receive.
Fake Java Script Generation all Part of the Ploy
Once the user clicks on the confirm button, a well-designed Java Script appears on screen, with the platform advising the user that the technology is currently engaging with the Bitcoin network, in order to generate their free coins.
After a few seconds of the fake generation process, a new box appears, telling the user that the “Exploitation was successful and the coins will be sent to you shortly“. However, as would be expected from such a scam, prior to funds being forwarded on to the previously supplied Bitcoin address, the user is asked to pay a ‘Transaction Fee’.
In terms of justification, the fake Bitcoin generator explains that in order for new blocks to be generated on to the blockchain, a small fee must be paid to miners in return for their efforts. As a result, once the small fee is paid to the provided Bitcoin address, the platform states that the generated Bitcoin will then be forwarded to the victim.
As per the covert exercise employed by the team at CCN, for a request of 0.1 BTC (which is the minimum that the fake generator permits), the stated fee is 0.002 BTC. Therefore, should an unsuspecting user fall victim to this particular example, the scam artist would have walked away with 0.002 BTC.
Well Known Bitcoin Faucet Might be Behind the Scam
Further research in to the scam, according to CCN, indicates that popular Bitcoin Faucet provider ‘Moon Bit’ may have had some involvement. The reason for this is that one of the requested Bitcoin addresses, which the scam provides to the user for the fictitious transaction fee, is associated with Moon Bit.
In total, the associated Bitcoin address, 15nLNJc9rfRhqgQMU6F9y85t3hSMG6AYwa, has managed to receive just over 0.8 BTC in payments. Although such scams are nothing new, if anything, it does indicate that the underlying characteristics of the blockchain protocol offers an element of transparency, not least because reporters at CCN were able to effectively link the Bitcoin generator address to that of Moon Bit.