Joe Biden, Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Apple's Twitter accounts were hacked on Wednesday, among other notable handles, and posted tweets seemingly promoting cryptocurrency fraud.
The accounts, along with those of former President Barack Obama, Kanye West, Warren Buffett, Jeff Bezos and Mike Bloomberg have posted similar tweets seeking donations via Bitcoin to their profiles.
"Everyone asked me to give back, now it's time," Gates' tweet said, and promised to double all payments to the Bitcoin address within the next 30 minutes.
"We can confirm that this tweet was not sent by Bill Gates," Gates' spokesman told CNN Business. "This appears to be part of a larger problem that Twitter is facing. Twitter is aware and restoring the account."
"We are aware of a security incident affecting the accounts on Twitter. We are investigating and taking steps to fix it. We will update everyone soon," said the Twitter support account in a tweet today.
The number of attacks is probably one of the largest security incidents in Twitter's history. A hack that took the account of one of these leaders could have devastating consequences.
A breakthrough like this is particularly pertinent not just because of any managed financial scam, but because many world leaders use Twitter - and some, like President Donald Trump, use it to announce major policy decisions.
A year earlier, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's account was hacked, raising concerns about whether any account on the platform could actually avoid a hack. The mechanism with which this hack occurred was fixed by Twitter after the Dorsey hack and there is no reason to believe that the blame is here.
A Biden campaign assistant said that Twitter "closed" his account immediately. "We are still in touch with Twitter on this issue," the aide added.
When asked if Trump's account likely being affected, or whether he was in contact with Twitter about this issue, the White House declined to comment.
Meanwhile, within minutes of posting the tweets, the Bitcoin account of the scammers showed over 320 transactions and received more than $113,000.
In order for the crypto scammer to hack all of these accounts, it is likely a security issue on the U.S. platform itself.
Here are some of the the scammed tweets: