Cybertrace raises alarm over deep fake crypto scam involving Australian tycoon Andrew Forrest


Cybertrace raises alarm over deep fake crypto scam involving Australian tycoon Andrew Forrest

Cybersecurity experts at Cybertrace have issued an alert concerning a sophisticated deep fake video featuring Australian mining tycoon and entrepreneur Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest endorsing a fraudulent crypto trading platform on social media.

The deceptive video, discovered on Facebook, entices viewers to join a sham platform named “Quantum AI,” promising substantial daily earnings for “ordinary people.” Cybertrace identifies Quantum AI as a term frequently linked with scams and financial deceit.

Dan Halpin, CEO of Cybertrace, expressed concerns to The Australian, suggesting that the deep fake’s convincing nature, attributed to its length and sales-oriented repetition, could easily mislead individuals. The counterfeit video manipulates Forrest’s appearance and mannerisms from a Rhodes Trust “fireside chat” in October, showcasing him promoting a fraudulent crypto trading software.

Cybertrace Investigators have identified a #deepfake video of Australian businessman Andrew Forrest. The original video was posted to the @rhodes_trust YouTube Channel. #ScamAlert #scam @FortescueNews

— Cybertrace (@Cybertrace_com) January 31, 2024

In the manipulated video, an AI-generated version of Forrest is seen promising potential partners a “chance of a lifetime” to join what is claimed to be the world’s most intelligent stock and cryptocurrency trading software. This software allegedly guarantees daily profits ranging from $700 to $2,200 for over nine months, irrespective of market conditions.

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Forrest, who is recognized as one of Australia’s most successful entrepreneurs with a reported net worth of $29.4 billion, is depicted in the scam video urging viewers to seize this opportunity before it’s too late.

The latest incident points out a broader issue of escalating digital fraud in Australia. In 2022, Australians fell victim to crypto scams, losing over $3 billion, highlighting the growing sophistication and impact of these schemes.

In September 2023, The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) announced a new four-year strategy to intensify its efforts against digital scams, including those involving cryptocurrencies, reflecting a nationwide concern over the proliferation of such fraudulent activities.

Similar deceptive tactics were observed in fake Elon Musk YouTube streams, which led to a $165,000 cryptocurrency scam, demonstrating the scammers’ reliance on deep fake technology and social engineering to exploit unsuspecting victims.

Furthermore, in a Nov. 16 hearing, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren raised awareness about the risks associated with cryptocurrency scams, particularly targeting senior investors, indicating the global challenge of combating these digital threats.


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