The NFT space is thriving like no other. Just yesterday, Visa bought a cryptopunk worth $150,000, which almost crashed OpenSea marketplace. The floor price of BAYC and ON1 Force reached 25 ETH and 5ETH, respectively. We could go on and on about all the exciting stuff happening with NFTs, but we should also stay cautious about some of the potential scams taking place every day.
Rare NFT collectibles are being stolen in ways no ordinary person could ever imagine. Even after securing your Metamask account, you are not out of the waters. Hackers are leveraging new technologies and glitches from the company’s end to their advantage to drain wallets in a few seconds.
We have seen scams where NFT holders misplace or share their seed phrase online to some suspecting websites aimed for phishing. But lately, there have been instances where NFT owners did everything right from their end and still got robbed. Let’s look at some examples and understand what you should avoid when it comes to Metamask accounts.
Ape_NFTs is one of the few people who got scammed in such a sophisticated manner. His whole account got wiped in seconds, and he lost an NFT collection worth 4 ETH. The thing we need to learn here is to avoid screen sharing. When Zeek didn’t verify the moderator, he had a target on his back. He let the scammers use the “Sync with Mobile” feature to restore his Metamask account. This way, hackers not only gained access to his wallet, but they did it without ever needing the actual private key or seed recovery phrase.
A similar incident occurred today, where a community member of 888 The New World lost three Apes and other collections from ON1 Force and the world of women nft. With the current prices of BAYC, this person lost more than $250k worth of NFT pieces. Even in this case, the person did not have his seed phrase written anywhere and didn’t transfer any details. It seems like he may have interacted with a phishing website that drained his collection.
In another instance, hackers are impersonating OpenSea support staff and fooling discord members to open a screen share. The NFT marketplace- OpenSea has a Discord channel established to help users with account problems and any other issues.
The hackers used this to their advantage, inserted many compromised links, and lured people into thinking that they were the real support staff from OpenSea. We can see many people getting affected after the company directs them to a discord server. Artist Jeff Nicholas also fell victim to this scam.
Fake OpenSea Support Server
Another important lesson here is that- you should never screen share when syncing your Metamask Chrome extension. Do it manually, or else your account can be compromised. A simple scan can recover your account, but if it’s in the wrong hands, your chances of getting your account back are zero.
These types of scams happen to even some of the founders who have been around in this crypto space for at least five to six years. Recently, a founder of an NFT project lost 16 CryptoPunks that could have easily made over a million dollars by falling for a duplicate website of Larva Labs.com.
10 CryptoPunks (Scammer’s wallet- larva labs)
Last but not least, we have seen concerns surrounding phrock buying activity on the OpenSea marketplace. According to Mudit Gupta, a blockchain security researcher, buy orders from the OpenSea platform are at risk of being stolen. It seems as if the contract has an internal exchange that could allow users to sell for higher prices.
After analyzing all these instances of scams, it is safe to say that your wallet can never be fully secured until and unless you use a ledger. You need to be aware of the QR code feature on Metamask, as it is easy for one to scan and steal all your funds in a couple of seconds.
In conclusion, you should always verify every entity you come across in this NFT and crypto world. It is a trustless environment, but you need to think twice before making any moves that could cost you thousands of dollars or priceless NFT collectibles.
Born and brought up in India, Karthikeya Gutta is a crypto journalist and freelance contributor for ItsBlockchain. He covers various aspects of the industry with in-depth analysis and research. His passion towards blockchain and crypto ecosystem is mainly because he believes it can really change the world and help millions of people.
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