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Scammers cash in on Ukrainian war with crypto scams on the dark web: Report

There have been several donation pages on the dark web asking for cryptocurrencies to help the Ukrainian cause amid the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian conflict. The threat intelligence arm of a cybersecurity solutions provider, Check Point Research, reports that while some organizations are offering genuine donation services, many fake ads have flooded the dark web.

The darknet is a section of the internet that is inaccessible to search engines and can only be accessed by anonymous web browsers. A number of prominent organizations, including the BBC and Twitter, have turned to the dark web to provide regular updates to the Russian public since their services have been restricted since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Meanwhile, scammers have been running fake donation camps to collect money with ‘Help Ukraine’ advertisements. ‘CPR has always taken a close look at the Darknet. Last year, we found advertisements for fake coronavirus services. Now, we’re seeing donation scams appear on the Darknet, as the Russia-Ukraine conflict intensifies,’ reports Oded Vanunu, product vulnerability research manager at Check Point Software.

A widowed mother and her two children, in bad shape and in need of money to escape the war-torn country, appeared in such an ad. Vanunu noted that the image was taken out of context from a German newspaper and was unrelated. Websites such as Defend Ukraine, as well as a Twitter account, have been found to be reliable.

NGOs and organizations in Ukraine are listed on the website, along with their contact information, and donations are requested in both bitcoin and Ethereum. The company has received over $9m in funding since it was registered in February 2022.


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