Twitter Inc. (TWTR) has become a hub for cryptocurrency frauds, and the company is now taking efforts to put a stop to them by removing manipulating accounts, according to the Verge. The move is part of a bigger trend in the social media arena, in which key companies are attempting to reduce harmful material in response to rising criticism from their users, the media, and governments across the globe. (Also see: The Ultra-Rich Are Investing More in Cryptocurrencies.)
Con artists on Twitter posing as individuals such as Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of digital currency Ethereum, and Elon Musk, founder of Tesla Inc. (TSLA), have used deceptive tactics in recent weeks to get people to send them small amounts of cryptocurrency in exchange for a larger sum upon delivery. To lure people in, the fraudsters will use a tiny typo of their username or the same or similar image as the actual account.
On Thursday, Twitter sent a statement to The Verge confirming the increase in this sort of behavior and promising to take action. “We are aware of this sort of manipulation and are proactive in developing a variety of signals to prevent these types of accounts from participating in dishonest behavior with others.”
Strugglingto Combat Harmful Content
The Silicon Valley firm presently does not have a formal ad policy for cryptocurrency and initial coin offering (ICO)-related marketing. Facebook Inc. (FB) expressly prohibited these forms of solicitations in January. Despite Facebook’s efforts, bitcoin advertisements continue to appear on the network.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey responded to a statement made earlier this week by CornellprofessorEminGün Sirer, who questioned the co-founder about the increase in cryptocurrency frauds. “We’re working on that,” Dorsey replied.
The professor said in an interview with Bloomberg that “Recently, crypto-spam reached unsustainable levels… It was difficult to debate any issue without someone impersonating a cryptocelebrity and attempting to collect coins from individuals with promises of quick riches.”
The decision comes as governments tighten their grip on the digital currency sector. Bitcoin, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by market value, fell this week after the SEC issued a warning that traders should only purchase and sell on exchanges that are registered with the agency. (See also: BlackRock: Bitcoin Is ‘Far’ From Going Mainstream.)
Investing in cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings (“ICOs”) is very dangerous and speculative, and this article is not a suggestion byInvestopedia or the author to do so. Because every person’s circumstance is different, a knowledgeable specialist should always be contacted before making any financial choices. Investopedia makes no claims or guarantees about the accuracy or timeliness of the information provided in this publication. The author owns cryptocurrencies as of the day this post was published.
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