YouTube Channel of South Korean Government Hacked in an Elon Musk-Crypto Scam (Report)
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Hackers have reportedly attacked several high-profile South Korean YouTube channels over the past few months. After gaining access, most wrongdoers used the platform to upload cryptocurrency-related videos.
Among the victims was the official YouTube channel of the South Korean government. Earlier this month, a group of cybercriminals compromised it to promote a crypto scam featuring Elon Musk’s image.
Users in South Korea should remain vigilant
Recent news coverage revealed that hackers had attacked the YouTube channels of the South Korean government, the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, and the Korea Tourism Organization.
In the government’s case, the criminals changed the name of the account to “SpaceX Invest” to convince consumers that it was associated with the American spacecraft manufacturer led by Elon Musk.
To add to the confusion, scammers posted videos of interviews with the world’s richest people talking about bitcoin and other digital currencies. However, the government reacted quickly and recognized the fraud a few hours later.
Individual YouTube channels were also compromised. After breaching the popular, which has more than 560,000 subscribers, security hackers began sharing videos of illegal software that investors could download and supposedly get rich.
Park Tae-hwan, team leader of AhnLab’s Security Emergency Center, said that the real purpose of most attackers was to access popular YouTube channels and advertise fraudulent cryptosystems to the general public.
“Every organization should review their security systems because now may be a trial period for larger attacks,” he warned.
Korea University professor Kim Seung-joo explained that the three main hacking methods are phishing attacks and credential stuffing, data stealers and malware. He thinks scammers are smart enough to target individual YouTube accounts and not the platform itself, otherwise Google would step in and spot the problem:
“If the attack was on the YouTube platform itself, the damage could have been greater and Google would have issued an official notification.”
A similar case in Great Britain
Such scams are not an isolated incident in South Korea. In July, hackers attacked the British Army’s YouTube channel and used it to promote two different fraudulent crypto schemes. Once again, criminals uploaded past interviews of famous people who have recently discussed cryptocurrencies, including Elon Musk and Jack Dorsey, to scam investors.
However, like the South Korean government, the British Ministry of Defense managed to overcome the problem within hours.
“We apologize for the temporary interruption of our feed. We are conducting a full investigation and learning from this incident. Thank you for following us and normal service will now resume,” officials said at the time.
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