Bitcoin Blogger Interviews Infamous Ethgiveaway Scammer
Perhaps the most common scam in the history of cryptocurrency is the “free crypto” scam. In these massive, yet simple, schemes, scammers convince victims to send Ethereum or Bitcoin to the scammer’s account, often with the promise that they will send back the amount, plus a hefty bonus. It’s a simple variation of an age-old scam, such as the Nigerian Prince scam, where a trapped “prince needs money to escape jail and will pay back the victim and give them a percentage of his wealth.
Recently, Adam of BitcoinStacks scored an incredibly rare interview with the ETHgiveaway scammer. This scam has been running for a long time, and has consequently gained significant notoriety within the cryptocurrency community. This scammer (or scammers) promises to provide from 5-100 Ether to the victim if they are to send a specified amount of Ether to their address. Unsurprisingly, the scammer then runs off with the money, returning nothing to the unfortunate victim.
Adam’s interview with the ETHgiveaway scammer illuminates some key questions that the community has long had regarding the origin and realities behind the man behind the scam. Lets take a look at the conversation from BitcoinStacks.com:
Adam: Ok added, what made you decide to reach out to me finally?
ETHgiveaway: I was checking dms for lulz from angry mooches and seen one of your messages
Adam: What do you mean by “mooches”
ETHgiveaway: a mooch is the ones who send us ETH
Adam: Oh I see ok, so why do you do this scam?
ETHgiveaway: Adam, I learned about crypto from you, back from your first bitcoin gambling vids on Yt, that is the only reason I am even talking to you here, since I respect what you have done and am a fan of your stuff, otherwise anybody else I would just ignore such messages, as I have been doing with all the angry mooches already.
Adam: Ok well I am glad that you have taken the time to do this convo with me and I have questions for you, so let's move onto them so we are not wasting any time, since for you and I both, time is money right?
ETHgiveaway: Right ok so what do you want to know
Adam: Why are you doing the scam?
ETHgiveaway: The money, easy money
Adam: Do you work as a team or just you?
ETHgiveaway: Small team but most of the operation is automated
Adam: When you say automated, can you explain?
ETHgiveaway: Well, the process from generating accounts, to tweeting to rotating ETH wallet address is all done automatic by our bots. The only manual process is cashing out.
Adam: But what about the Verified accounts (blue tick) how can you automatically create those?
ETHgiveaway: We do not use those now, they were just for a while we buy the accounts from markets selling sploited accounts that were verified on twitter then change name of account.
Adam: How much do they sell those hacked accounts for on the markets?
ETHgiveaway: it's not a secret market or dark market, they sell on most gaming forums actually, the price is like 100 to 1000 usd per account depending on how many followers it has. But since owner reports account stolen fast, the account lasts not much more than a few hours, sometimes we get lucky with a couple of days before it gets killed.
Adam: So why did you stop using verified accounts?
ETHgiveaway: because the mooches send eth to any account we make, they do not even care about verfied like we assumed they would. The mooch is just so excited to make money for nothing and multiply their ETH
Adam:Ok fair enough, so tell me how much money you make with the scam
ETHgiveaway: Per day or total so far?
Adam: Let's start per day average
ETHgiveaway: it changes every day, most days pull in 100-200+ ETH but some rare days maybe only 50+
Adam: 100 ETH like 50,000 USD? per day?
ETHgiveaway: yes this is what we raise GROSS not NET
Adam: Not NET? What are there, fees or something involved to get a NET?
ETHgiveaway: we have to move the funds to the smaller exchanges often and dex to trade pairs and wash out to other coins then to cash. It is a process but I can not get into more detail for you ok?
Adam: How do you think the community will react when I tell them how much money you are making?
ETHgiveaway: I don't care
Adam: Why, what if some of these people send you their savings or rent money or something
ETHgiveaway: Look, these mooches would never give their cash to anyone, but they see crypto as not money, so they gamble with it and this is only a gamble for them and they lost. Deal with it.
Adam: Are you not worried about leaving a trail and getting caught?
ETHgiveaway: There is no crime in this promotion, the worst that could happen is someone would try to sue, but who do you think would make a lawsuit for .5 eth or whatever? So knowing this, it is open season for all to get paid.
Adam: But what about someone who is crazy enough to want to find their stolen money and find the source? What kind of precautions (if any) do you currently employ?
ETHgiveaway: I will not disclose current methods in great detail but in the past it has been as simple as doing all tweets through a net of proxy boxes, like example AWM for 195 per mth we can lock in 2000 threads in a big pool of slave boxes, but we use other less popular sources to keep it even more safe.
Adam: You mean awmproxy?
ETHgiveaway: yes im sure you are not stranger to this Adam lul
Adam: Yes I know of the provider, I know the telegram crypto spammers used them for a long time until they blocked all telegram connects.
ETHgiveaway: You do some telegram stuff now?
Adam: What do you think of the latest “fake follower purge” that twitter did and was big in the news?
ETHgiveaway: I don't care, does not affect me at all, stupid twitter kill all those bot accounts based on their backwards algo while most of our accounts stay alive still lulz. So I say thank you twitter for making things so easy and not interfere with my work.
Adam: What about all the complaints though from the people on twitter, are you not worried that they will make it nearly impossible to do this anymore? What will you do if it becomes too difficult to do this?
ETHgiveaway: I will take a long vacation and buy a few lambo
Adam: Do you actually own any luxury vehicles right now?
ETHgiveaway: Way too personal Adam, next question
Adam: I want to share this with the community, our convo, do you have a problem with that?
ETHgiveaway: I don't care do what you wish. It does not change my past present or future.
ETHgiveaway: I only talk about my business because it is you and I learned about crypto from you in 2016. I was very poor and now I never will work or need to work outside again now that my life has change from crypto.
Adam: I see, well there are other ways you can make big money in crypto, why don't you give them a chance and stop scamming?
ETHgiveaway: I already do other things, I make my money work for me every day, the portfolio I have now to make big movement on trading allows me to make big gains on small increase with high liquid coins. I started with only 1 btc that I bought on localbitcoin in 2016 and today it is not rare that I will do daily trades with 40-50 btc on certain pairs. Even if things go in the wrong direction it does not make a problem for me, the freedom I have now financially is strong
Adam: I see
Adam: One last question, are there multiple people other than you and not connected to you that are doing the scam on Twitter? Or are all the accounts yours?
ETHgiveaway: No comment.
Our Takeaway From the Conversation
One of the most striking revelations from this particular interview is the flippancy with which this scammer seems to address his crimes. At several points during the interview, he outlines that he doesn’t mind taking money away from people because they view Bitcoin and Ethereum as “a gamble,” and he feels that his victims would just end up gambling it away regardless of whether or not they got scammed.
He also seems relatively convinced that he will not be caught doing his scamming. The scammer posited that his immense network of proxies and automated bots make him nearly untraceable. Perhaps even more interestingly, this scammer seems to believe that litigation against him because of his actions would be largely frivolous and ineffectual.
Adam was quick to ask how exactly the verified accounts used by the ETHgiveaway scammer play into the overall scamming process. The man (or woman) explained that they stopped using verified accounts long ago because, even if the account isn’t verified, the victims will “give us their money anyway.” He outlines that they used to buy verified but hacked accounts, which would usually last for a couple hours, or even a few days, before being taken down following reports from the original owner.
After the money is given to the scammer, it is run through a variety of wallets, exchanges, and different platforms. He says that the only part of the entire process that is not automated is the cashing out, which obviously has to be done by a real person.
Adam also attempted to get some of the most important details regarding the process of the Ethereum scam: the money made. According to the (obviously) anonymous scammer, the operation pulls around USD $50,000 every day. The scammer was quick to specify that this is the gross, but not the net, amount of profit the scheme makes. Some of their profit is eaten away from the fees associated with what is assumed to be the laundering process employed by the scammer (or scammers).
Adam’s piece is an eye-opening look into the mind of one of the most infamous scammers on the blockchain.