A Twitter phishing scam hacked verified accounts, some of which had Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) profile pictures. The scam sought to defraud crypto-savvy users of a little more than $1 million this week through a phony ApeCoin airdrop. 

For those who missed last week’s news, ApeCoin is a cryptocurrency that can be claimed by BAYC and Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC) holders. It was launched by ApeCoin DAO, and the token will power several spin-off projects from the BAYC franchise.

This week’s fake airdrop lured victims with an ostensibly legitimate tweet coming from hacked accounts, which read, “Launch of Ape Coin has been a big success! We have collectively decided to airdrop some more to active NFT Traders/Holders. If you don’t currently own NFTs, you can claim with a 0.33 ETH fee!” 

The tweet then enclosed a link as bait for the scam. 

Unpacking the Ape Coin airdrop scam

NFT collector Bored Alien Silver Ape was one of the worst affected. He lost over half a million dollars worth of BAYC and MAYC NFTs in the attack, according to Etherscan

He immediately blamed an account called Bhawana Ghimire, a name possibly drawn from the former CEO of the Cricket Association of Nepal. 

The verified account was masquerading as a BAYC founder

Blockchain analytics account AnChain.AI posted a play-by-play breakdown of the heist and identified three more compromised accounts involved in spreading the attack: Dana.eth, who also claimed to be a BAYC founder, sports journalist Gavin Quinn, and musician Mila.

An account called “NFTEthics” also identified business journalist…

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