The 2020 U.S. presidential election may still be unresolved as of Wednesday morning, but “Elon Musk” wanted to celebrate! And, like so many countless times before, he decided the best way to do so was to give away scores of cryptocurrency via his Twitter account.
That is, if the verified Twitter account with the display name “Elon Musk” was to believed. It should not be believed.
Once again, despite Twitter’s efforts, a verified Twitter account changed its display name to that of the Tesla CEO and scammed people out of their cryptocurrency. And, because the entire thing wasn’t absurd enough already, the (likely hacked) account just so happened to run its scam in the replies of Donald Trump.
“It is all but decided by now,” read one of many similar tweets from the scam account. “In other words, it’s over. To celebrate, we are giving it to the people.”
If you followed the tweet’s instruction, and went to musk-coins.com (which you should not do), you’d find a fake Medium page telling you the “marketing department here at Tesla HQ came up with an idea: to hold a special giveaway event for all crypto fans out there.”
Interestingly, during the course of writing the article, the scammer switched the account’s display name to “.” However, that appears to have occurred after the scammer received around $32,000 worth of bitcoin and over $6,000 worth of ether.
A visit to the Internet Archive shows the verified account once belonged to an Emma Isaacs — the CEO of a company called Business Chicks. But that was before today.
Notably, to deal with this recurring scam, Twitter promised in 2018 that it would automatically lock any account that changed its display name to “Elon Musk.” That clearly did not happen Wednesday.
We reached out to Twitter and asked if it has changed that policy, and if so, why. We also asked if the policy hasn’t been changed, why the scam account is still active as of Wednesday morning. We received no immediate response.
But hey, as the nation waits on edge for the results of the U.S. presidential election and any changes the results may or may not bring with them, at least we know we’ll always have scammers running circles around Twitter’s enforcement policies. Some things never change.