Unidentified hackers broke into high-profile Twitter accounts on Wednesday in an apparent Bitcoin scam, including those of former U.S. president Barack Obama, Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden, and a number of tech billionaires including Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
The accounts posted similar tweets soliciting donations via digital currency to their verified profiles.
In a sign of the seriousness of the problem, Twitter took the extraordinary step of preventing holders of verified accounts from tweeting.
Twitter said, “We are aware of a security incident impacting accounts on Twitter. We are investigating and taking steps to fix it. We will update everyone shortly.”
The fake tweets offered to send 2,000 dollars for every 1,000 dollars sent to an anonymous Bitcoin address.
There is no evidence that the owners of these accounts were targeted themselves.