Over the weekend, while many in the United States were pre-gaming today’s Fourth of July holiday celebrations, in the UK, the British Army was scrambling to regain control its Twitter and YouTube accounts that had both been hacked to promote NFTs and other crypto investment scans.
According to the BBC, at one point over the weekend, the British Army’s Twitter account’s name was changed to Bapesclan along with a “profile picture featuring an ape-like cartoon figure with make-up mimicking a clown.” Another website, Web3 is going just great, reported that the army’s Twitter account details were at one point also “changed to resemble the Possessed NFT project” and published tweets promoting a new NFT collection that linked out to a fake minting website.
The British Army’s YouTube account was instead rebranded to resemble Catherine D. Wood’s very real investment firm, ARK Invest, and published several livestreams featuring Jack Dorsey and Elon Musk that had originally been streamed last June as part of an Ark Invest conference. The livestream videos were modified with overlays promoting several Bitcoin and Ether cryptocurrency scams, which clearly answers the question about why both of these social media accounts had been hijacked.
By Sunday evening, both accounts, which combined have over half a million followers, were fully restored, but you can still access archived copies of the compromised versions of the British Army’s YouTube and Twitter pages through the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine service.
The British Army has officially confirmed that the hacks occurred, but while it’s still investigating the incident it hasn’t specified or even speculated who or what organization might be behind them. An army spokesperson told the BBC: “Whilst we have now resolved the issue an investigation is ongoing and it would be inappropriate to comment further.”