Vitalik Buterin Confirmed X Account Hacked by SIM-Swap Attack


230 Listen to this article Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, has officially verified that the recent breach of his […]

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Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, has officially verified that the recent breach of his X (Twitter) account occurred due to a SIM-swap attack. Speaking on the decentralized social media network Farcaster, Buterin revealed that he has successfully regained control of his T-Mobile account after the hacker orchestrated a SIM swap attack.

In his statement, Buterin explained, “Yes, it was a SIM swap, meaning that someone socially-engineered T-Mobile itself to take over my phone number.” This incident sheds light on the vulnerability of phone numbers as potential gateways to hacking, even when not used for two-factor authentication (2FA). Buterin emphasized that a phone number alone could be sufficient to initiate a password reset for a Twitter account.

The hack of Buterin’s X account occurred on September 9 when scammers gained access and posted a fake NFT giveaway, luring unsuspecting users to click on a malicious link. As a result, victims collectively lost over $691,000.

Ethereum developer Tim Beiko strongly recommended removing phone numbers from X accounts and enabling 2FA in response to the incident. He suggested, “Seems like a no-brainer to have this default on, or to default turn it on when an account reaches, say, >10k followers,” addressing platform owner Elon Musk.

A SIM-swap or simjacking attack is a technique used by hackers to seize control of a victim’s mobile phone number. Once in control of the number, scammers can utilize 2FA to access social media, bank, and cryptocurrency accounts.

Read Also:  IMF Director's Firm Stance: Crypto Is Not Real Money

It’s worth noting that this is not the first time T-Mobile has been associated with this type of attack. In 2020, the telecom giant faced a lawsuit for allegedly enabling the theft of $8.7 million worth of cryptocurrency through a series of SIM-swap attacks. T-Mobile was subsequently sued again in February 2021 when a customer lost $450,000 in Bitcoin in yet another SIM-swap attack. These incidents underscore the importance of strengthening security measures against SIM-swap vulnerabilities.

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