PSA: Bitcoin Spoof Apps & Phishing Attempts on the Rise


PSA: Bitcoin Spoof Apps & Phishing Attempts on the Rise

Bitcoin users need to be awfully careful when downloading wallets and surfing the web. Currently, there are quite a few methods of stealing cryptocurrency floating around, such as spoof wallets on Apple’s App Store, and phishing emails claiming to be from the recently-hacked Bitfinex exchange.

Also read: Blocknet: Exit Centralized Exchanges Now Amid ‘Damaged Confidence’

Bitfinex Phishing Attempt

phishing BTCOn August 2, well-known exchange Bitfinex had been compromised, reportedly losing 120,000 BTC ($60 million USD), and the company has been rather quiet. Users have been curious about whether or not their funds are safe, but with very little information over the past few days, they have been left wondering.

Unfortunately, during this silent time, someone has decided to send out some phishing emails that appear to be from Bitfinex. The company has recently released a blog post warning people about this issue. Bitfinex’s official message states:

We like to stress this is not a message sent out by Bitfinex, and we advise anyone that has received this email or any similar email to delete it immediately. Do not open the attachments and if you have opened the attachments do a full virus scan of your computer.

The phishing email explains the recent hack and pretends to give the customer an offer of settlement. The message also contains an application looking for personal information regarding a refund towards the losses the business had suffered from. The fake email explains losses have been “big scale” and full refunds to customers would not be returned. However, the phony email proposes a “solution”:

We propose a solution. We are planning to set electronic bonds which will let you claim for dividend payment for the common benefit of our company. You will receive the percentage of dividends, equal to the sum of lost funds. If you accept our offer, please, check your personal information carefully, fill in the Application for refund and send it back to us.—Thank you for understanding and support.—The Bitfinex Team

Spoof Bitcoin Wallets on the Apple App Store

App Store SpoofThis past week, a significant number of fake bitcoin wallet applications have been found on Apple’s App Store. Community member Breadwallet_Dan brought the spoof wallets to the attention of Bitcoiners across various forums. This list includes wallets posing as popular services such as the Simple Bitcoin Wallet, The Bitcoin Wallet, Armory, Greenaddress, and BitcoinCore.

Typically, Apple holds a fairly rigorous review towards applications entering the App Store. However, in this case, they missed quite a few, and Bitcoin users are notifying them of the fraudulent platforms.

The various iTunes links leading to these spoof wallets are currently still active, and users should use extreme caution when downloading any of these applications. The best way to do this is to follow the links given at the official company’s websites rather than third-party web pages that host wallet information and downloadable links. The fake wallets do have various clues that can differentiate them from the official apps, such as different ID numbers, and incorrect developer listings.

Use Caution at All Times

SpoofDuring times like these, readers are reminded to use extreme caution at all times. This week, we discussed the importance of holding your own keys, but there is great importance on diligently researching the applications that help you utilize and spend your bitcoin. The best thing to do is stay alert and be very careful of shady websites and always keep your information private.

What do you think about the various phishing attempts and spoof wallets appearing on the App Store? Let us know in the comments below.

Tags in this story
Apple App Store, BitFinex, Green Address, Phishing attack

Images courtesy of Pixabay. 

Jamie Redman

Jamie Redman is the News Lead at News and a financial tech journalist living in Florida. Redman has been an active member of the cryptocurrency community since 2011. He has a passion for Bitcoin, open-source code, and decentralized applications. Since September 2015, Redman has written more than 6,000 articles for News about the disruptive protocols emerging today.

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