5 BTC worth ($243,000) were sent to a scam address linked to SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk on 1st March. The address 1EMuskYdgB3BtwxpEP46txN5EAN8KnA7dE was identified with a verified scam Elon Musk website elon2x.com/tesla.htm that promises to double every Bitcoin it earns between 0.1 and 10 BTC.
It is not the first time when individuals fall for Bitcoin scams whose addresses look like they are owned by celebrities. According to ZDNet, fake accounts purporting to be owned by Musk have made over $2 million just in two months. These Bitcoins are usually sent to vanity addresses that usually include names of certain celebrities.
Although it’s unclear if the sender is a target of the scammer or collaborating for them (e.g., the scammer moving money between wallets), the incident acts as a friendly warning that the Tesla CEO and SpaceX isn’t here to make anyone wealthy.
When Showtime, an upcoming NFT social network, speculated at its airdrop on Twitter by asking for Ethereum addresses, it drew in legitimate blockchain authorities like CoinShares Chief Strategy Officer, Meltem Demirors and Van Ness, ETH publisher. The difference, however, is that nobody asked them to send money.
People fall for scams like that for a number of reasons, including gullibility. At times there could be a thing like free lunch. For instance, Uniswap, a decentralized exchange, airdropped 400 UNI tokens (worth $1,200 at the time) to its users in September 2020. Those who kept the governance tokens now have $10,000 in their hands.
When anything seems to be too nice to be real, it most definitely is, at least for the time being. What other reason do you have for being willing to purchase Bitcoin for $8,000 a year ago and cash out with a $40,000 profit now?
Protocols are hacked, liquidity pools are exhausted, and rugs are pulled, among other items. This is the mystical land of internet wealth, where schemes coexist with investments, theft with financial independence.
Elon Musk, on the other side, is a wealthy owner of an expensive company. And that cannot be the reason he may want to send you free Bitcoin.