May 29, 2024
Friend.tech SIM-Swap Scam Persists: Fraudster Gains $385K in Ether
Latest Cryptocurrency News

Friend.tech SIM-Swap Scam Persists: Fraudster Gains $385K in Ether

In less than 24 hours, a single scammer has reportedly managed to steal approximately $385,000 worth of Ether through a series of SIM-swap hacks that appear to be targeting users of Friend.tech. On October 5th, blockchain analyst ZachXBT reported that the same scammer had stolen 234 ETH in the past day by SIM-swapping four different Friend.tech users.

The movement of stolen crypto assets on the blockchain was traced back to the same hacker who targeted the four victims. One of the victims of the recent SIM-swap attacks took to Twitter to share their experience, stating:

“Got sim swapped. Apparently, the dude was able to do it from an Apple store and switched it to an iPhone SE. Don’t buy my keys, that wallet is compromised.”

Another Twitter user, “KingMgugga,” reported being targeted in real-time, saying they were “getting f—ing sim swapped watching it happen” and seeking assistance. Meanwhile, “holycryptoroni,” another Twitter user, confirmed that they were similarly attacked, expressing regret, “I got swapped, sorry.”

Earlier in the week, four more Friend.tech users claimed that their accounts were drained due to SIM-swap or phishing attacks, resulting in a total of around 109 ETH stolen. Friend.tech allows users to purchase “keys” to individuals, granting access to private chat rooms with them.

SIM-swap scams occur when scammers gain access to a victim’s phone number and use it to obtain authentication, allowing them to access social media and cryptocurrency accounts. Manifold Trading, a firm developing tools for the crypto ecosystem, estimated that as much as $20 million of Friend.tech’s $50 million total value locked could be at risk. They called for the platform to enhance its account security measures by implementing two-factor authentication (2FA). There have also been calls for Twitter (referred to as “X” in the report) to introduce 2FA security measures to prevent mobile phone numbers from being leaked, following the high-profile hack of Vitalik Buterin’s account in September, which also resulted from a SIM swap attack.

“0xfoobar,” the founder and CEO of wallet security firm Delegate, recommended removing phone numbers from social media accounts as a security precaution.

Image by rawpixel.com on Freepik

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