[Crypto User Alert] Google’s Youtube Ad Promotes An Illegitimate Electrum Bitcoin Wallet Unintentionally
Despite Having A Ban Against Many Crypto Ads, Google Just Promoted A Malicious Bitcoin Wallet Unintentionally Via YouTube
YouTube has plenty of its own vloggers that like to discuss cryptocurrency in the blockchain world. However, the Google-owned video website recently promoted an illegitimate version of Electrum, a Bitcoin wallet unintentionally. This discovery was unearthed by a Redditor, who noticed that the advertisement was meant to look authentic and even provided the right link.
Unfortunately, even though everything looks like it will lead the consumer to the right place, clicking the advertisement initiates a download of a malicious exe file instantly.
The users are taken to elecktrum.org, which should be electrum.org instead. This trickery is known as typosquatting, which involves slight alterations to the original website in an unnoticeable way. Based on the post from the Redditor, it did not look like there was an obvious way to reach out to Google about the malicious advertisement.
With this story reported by The Hard Fork, the publication reached out to Google to verify that the advertisement was real. A representative replied to the request for information, saying that the “appropriate action” has been taken after the ad was reported to them.
Scammers have gone after Electrum before, back in April 2018. At the time, a scammer again purchases a similar domain, impersonating the service. Ultimately, Electrum had to take to Twitter to alert their users that they were not the owners of the domain “electrum.com,” and they added that it is most likely that the website features “bitcoin stealing malware.”
Just a month later, the imposter – known as Electrum Pro – shut down the website, which led the followers of the community to believe that an exit scam was afoot. However, Electrum Pro said that Electrum was responsible for tarnishing their reputation, leading them to have to leave the industry.
No matter the real story behind their departure, it is important that consumers can do is to pay close attention to the websites that they visit to avoid type-squatting. Still, scammers are getting smarter by the day, and any investor has to acknowledge that risk when they participate in the industry.