Unknown hackers hacked a Russian official website and staged a fake bitcoin giveaway in an apparently Ponzi-style scheme.
Ponzi is a fraud in which scammers lure investors and pay profits to earlier investors with funds from more recent investors.
The attack comes after recent research indicated that losses from cryptocurrency-related fraud in Russia totaled $30 million in the first half of this year. According to Chainalysis, Russia is one of the top ten countries dealing with crypto-related criminal activity.
The event was organized to coincide with the Russian government’s Bitcoin giveaway. According to a report by the local Russian news agency Izvestia, the scammers behind the hacking of the Russian official government website are yet to be identified.
Most people believe that Bitcoin and crypto, in general, is an unusual and shady way to make money. Nevertheless, many undertake small online jobs to earn money in exchange for free cryptos or get tricked into giving away their hard-earned money in an attempt to get rich quickly.
The hackers offered to give 0.025 BTC to every visitor who downloaded the application. They also offered a $1,000 bitcoin reward to five players randomly picked in a fake advertisement named “Ryazani online lottery.”
Both ads are now gone from the official website, but a local news outlet shared a screenshot of one of them.
Russia has recently been dealing with several crypto-related controversies. On the one hand, the Russian government wants Russia to adopt crypto. On the other hand, hackers attempt to make government officials not adopt crypto by engaging in such illegal activities.