Multiple high profile, verified Twitter accounts were reportedly hijacked throughout the past few days in an attempt to lure users into Azuki NFT scams.
The series of hacks mainly targeted official government institutions of India, as well as the Twitter profiles of local journalists and media.
Institutional Accounts Hacked
Several official accounts, including the government of the Uttar Pradesh state of India, the Ministry of Education, The National Congress, the University Grants Commission, and the Meteorology Department were hacked in the past few days and had their profiles changed to imitate the popular anime-styled Azuki NFT collection creators in an attempt to lure victims into a fake airdrop scam in order to steal their NFTs.
Apart from government accounts, the fraudsters also targeted the accounts of prominent journalists and officials in India that have hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers.
The bad actors sent phishing emails to the accounts, imitating the format of legitimate Twitter support letters, to gain access to their victims’ accounts. Right after the accounts were taken over, the scammers changed the identity of the profiles’ owners to fake ones.
Pretending to be a co-founder of the highly popular Azuki NFT project, they spread thousand of tweets inviting followers to connect their wallets and participate in a “secret Beanz airdrop”, which had previously only been available for existing Azuki NFT owners.
Users were asked to connect their NFT wallets to receive the NFTs. As far as it is known, none of them have been granted Beanz NFTs. Since the incident, no users have reported any stolen NFTs from their wallets.
As of today, the compromised Twitter accounts for India’s institutions have been restored. The true creators of the Azuki NFTs, Chiru Labs, have yet to issue a comment on the matter.
Over the past few months, Azuki, the 10,000 anime-themed NFT avatar collection minted this January, has become one of the best traded NFT collections of all time. Azuki NFTs were sold for 178.8K Ethereum (worth over $568.5M as of today’s prices) with an average selling price of 8.27 ETH. Azuki NFTs rank among the top 10 most traded collections on the biggest NFT marketplace, OpenSea.