Blockchain security experts at CertiK recently revealed a sophisticated deepfake video where Vitalik Buterin, the renowned co-founder of Ethereum, appears to endorse a phishing site designed to drain wallets.
This occurrence is not isolated. Cybercriminals have repeatedly leveraged Buterin’s stature to further their deceptive agendas. For instance, in September, a significant scam went viral featuring a deepfake video of Buterin promoting a bogus meme token.
Deepfakes, intricate digital fabrications that utilize AI to produce counterfeit videos or audio of well-known figures for deceptive endorsements or misinformation, are gradually becoming more prevalent in the cryptocurrency sector.
In a notable event earlier this year, attackers hijacked various YouTube channels to disseminate deepfake content of Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy’s ex-CEO, falsely advertising Bitcoin giveaways. Additionally, a fabricated representation of Sam Bankman-Fried, the former head of FTX, was used in a deepfake promising unfounded compensations to users in the wake of FTX’s collapse. Similarly, a deepfake video falsely promoting a crypto trading platform with Andrew Forrest, an Australian entrepreneur, promising implausible returns was circulated.
The increasing frequency of these deepfakes highlights the growing complexity of cyber threats within the cryptocurrency industry. It underscores the crucial importance of heightened awareness and proactive measures by both users and investors to identify and counteract these fraudulent schemes.