Researchers Sound Alarms As Deepfake Videos Of Buterin, Saylor And Bankman-Fried Hit The Internet

Researchers Sound Alarms As Deepfake Videos Of Buterin, Saylor And Bankman-Fried Hit The Internet

Key Insights

  • Scammers have now used deepfakes of Vitalik Buterin, Michael Saylor, Sam Bankman-Fried, and Andrew Forrest to promote fake crypto schemes.
  • These deepfake videos often endorse fake investments or giveaways, tricking viewers into sharing private keys or passwords.
  • A Texas company also recently used a fake Biden robocall to discourage New Hampshire voters from participating in elections.
  • The World Economic Forum and other security agencies have also warned about the potential of deepfakes to spread misinformation and manipulate people.

These days, it often seems like the hackers and scammers come up with new and improved ways to rob unsuspecting investors blind, especially in the crypto industry.

This week, the latest in this hack and scam trend is with deepfakes.

Very recently, a blockchain security firm drew attention to a hyper-realistic deepfake video of a prominent individual in the blockchain space.

Vitalik Buterin, The Latest Victim Of The Deepfake Trend

This week, CertiK, a prominent blockchain security firm drew attention to a deepfake video featuring Ethereum co-founder, Vitalik Buterin.

In a snapshot of this video posted by CertiK, the "very real" Buterin, seemed to endorsing a crypto wallet drainer.

Vitalik Buterin's fake endorsement
Vitalik Buterin's fake endorsement

This recent development has turned out to be the latest in a long line of deepfake scams involving several notable figures in the blockchain space like Andrew Forrest, Michael Saylor and even Sam Bankman-Fried.

Early last year, a deepfake video featuring Australian businessman, Andrew Forrest was also shared online in March 2023 according to CyberTrace, another security company.

The deep fake video from Forrest
The deep fake video from Forrest

In the video, Forrest appeared to be advertising Bitcoin Evolution, a crypto trading program that promised investors massive returns, along with the fake Forrest, claiming that he had made millions of dollars from the program.

More Crypto Personalities Targeted

In April 2023 as well, Sam Bankman-Fried was also a target of one of these scams.

Less than a few months after the so called "king of crypto" was arrested for the crash of FTX and Alameda Research, a deepfake video surfaced online.

Bankman Fried offering compensation
Bankman Fried offering compensation

In the video, the fake Bankman-Fried stated that FTX would be offering compensations to users who lost money during the FTX/Alameda crash in November, the year before.

And as one might expect, the fake Bankman-Fried directed users to a phishing site that asked for their private keys and passwords in an obvious attempt to drain their wallets.

The Saylor/MicroStrategy deep fake
The Saylor/MicroStrategy deep fake

Michael Saylor, the billionaire chairman of MicroStrategy was also a victim of these deepfakes earlier in 2024, when several YouTube channels started to post deepfake videos of the former CEO, promoting fake Bitcoin giveaways.

Meanwhile, A Joe Biden AI Scandal Hits New Hampshire, US

In the midst of all of this, a Texas company and a man named Walter Monk are being investigated for using AI to create fake "robocalls" from President Joe Biden.

In these fake calls, the voice—which sounded very much like US President, Joe Biden—was advising New Hampshire voters not to take part in the May primary election.

Walter Monk and Life Corporation
Walter Monk and Life Corporation

These robocalls were allegedly sent out to thousands of voters in New Hampshire last month, and featured a voice telling them to not vote, because it was a "waste of time".

The voice mentioned that the primary elections were a "rigged" process that favoured Biden's rivals, and that Biden already had the nomination for the 2024 presidential seat.

The New Hampshire Department of Justice identified the perpetrators of the robocalls as Walter Monk—and Life Corporation, a Texas-based company.

So far, Jessica Rosenworcel, the chairwoman of the FCC, has also suggested a new rule that would make any robocalls that employ artificial intelligence (AI) voices illegal and subject to the rules and penalties under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

In Conclusion

Concerns over AI-generated material have intensified due to how widely deepfakes are now being used.

The World Economic Forum has highlighted the negative effects of AI technology in its 19th Global Risks report, and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, has also expressed alarm over the use of AI deepfakes in misinformation.

Overall, investors and members of the crypto community are advised to be on the lookout for potential scams and attempts to manipulate or drain their wallets.

Disclaimer: Voice of Crypto aims to deliver accurate and up-to-date information, but it will not be responsible for any missing facts or inaccurate information. Cryptocurrencies are highly volatile financial assets, so research and make your own financial decisions.

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