New Coronavirus Scam Urges Users to Trade in Bitcoin and Earn Millions

  • The emails emulated the UK newspaper, The Sun, with a style resembling the top red banner from the news site.
  • Researcher revealed that the scam is a retooling of an older spam campaign that involved British comedian Jim Davidson.

After multiple reports of COVID-19-themed scams in the last few days, now we have one more addition to the ever-growing list: a Coronavirus bitcoin scam that promises victims of earning millions while working from home.

Repurposed scam campaign
Researcher revealed that the scam is a retooling of an older spam campaign that involved British comedian Jim Davidson, which appeared around November 2019.

  • The landing pages were found to be similar to the previous campaign.
  • Other redirecting pages or websites remained untouched from how they appeared initially. 
  • Email content mentioning coronavirus is the only new ingredient in this recent scam.

How does it work?
The scammers send potential targets a non-stop drip-feed of emails from many different addresses, around one every other day. All the email addresses have same label of “coronavirus positives.”

  • After convincing the victims to click on the page promoting some kind of Bitcoin system, hackers offer users access to a trading platform. 
  • To lure potential victims, a sizeable amount is being shown deposited into users’ account wallet over time.
  • Then an “investment manager” requests the victims to deposit a commission amount into a bank account, after which the promised funds are supposed to flow into their bank accounts.

Some of the subject lines used in the scam read, “Staying at home because of COVID-19!! Spend your time making thousands on Bitcoins; The positive impact of staying home (Corona-virus), Make a thousand a day trading Bitcoin, Join 1000s of Brits making 1000s a day. Bitcoin is back – and this time you can make a million.”

Analysing the scam emails
  • The scam emails also contain a few familiar faces from UK daytime television.
  • The emails emulated the UK newspaper, The Sun, with a style resembling the top red banner from the news site.
  • Some emails also featured a student describing how he “earned more than £40,000 every month working from home.”