Albeit a long time coming, the Twitter account of Chengpang Zhao (Binance CEO) has finally been granted the highly revered blue tick of authentication. Appearing as a trivial matter to most outside the crypto industry, to those within it, the news is vital for the oft-exploited social media platform that appears to be losing the fight against simulated accounts that entice profit-seeking users with fabricated ‘promotions’, ‘competitions’, and ‘donations’.

For anyone that regularly checks Twitter to stay up-to-date with the latest happenings out of the cryptocurrency and blockchain technology space, it has become near-impossible to not notice how incredibly pervasive imitative accounts have become.

The easy-to-make faux accounts can effortlessly fool inexperienced users, particular those attracted to cryptocurrency exclusively for the chance to flip a quick profit. These fake profiles will mimic the profile picture of their associated industry influencer, whilst their Twitter handle will appear near-identical. Having been granted the blue authentication ‘tick’, Zhao now has a prominent feature that will always distinguish his account from those that attempt to resemble it.

Indeed, the imposter accounts claiming to be Zhao will diminish now that the 41-year-old billionaire has received his blue authentication symbol from Twitter. They won’t subside entirely, however, going by the persistent level of spam activity on the profiles of other prominent crypto influencers – despite having been verified by Twitter. Indeed, familiar names like Vitalik Buterin, Justin Sun, and John McAfee are constantly having to educate their followers about the issue that still impairs each and every tweet they share.

Disturbingly, this problem only appears to be worsening. Given that scammers only ever follow the money, it would seem that these thieves are actually managing to raise an amount that sees their time and effort adequately compensated for.

To demonstrate just how economically rewarding these scams can be, just earlier this week, a fake Vitalik Buterin profile “managed to get more than $21k in just a few days.” The ingenious technique adopted? Nothing more than an Ethereum ‘give away’ that required users to send 0.3-0.7 ETH to the Ethereum address provided, and if they did, ‘Vitalik’ would send them back 10x that amount (i.e., 3-7 ETH).

Even influencers outside the crypto industry aren’t exempt from this imitation plague. Billionaire Elon Musk has long been targeted, especially as he is commonly rumoured to be the real Satoshi Nakamoto (despite denying it). Just today he addressed these imposters, revealing that it makes no sense for him to offer coins, as he “literally own[s] zero cryptocurrency, apart from .25 BTC that a friend sent.”

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