author photo
By Clare O’Gara
Wed | Jul 22, 2020 | 8:51 AM PDT

Over the last week or so, SecureWorld has kept you in the loop about Twitter's recent account hack.

Much of the world's focus has moved toward investigating the hack as a "whodunit." Was it social engineering? Insider threat? Could the Twitter account of a deceased hacker lead us to the perpetrators?

Now, we have some updates on the other side of this attack: impact.

How much money did the Twitter hackers steal?

Early coverage of the attack already revealed some staggering numbers.

Through a cryptocurrency scheme tweeted out by hacked celebrity accounts, hackers baited other users into sending thousands of dollars directly to them (via a cryptocurrency wallet).

The link was only active briefly, but Tim Cotten, a Bitcoin researcher, told CNN that people fell for the double-your-money scam:

"In the hours immediately after the wallet's identification number was posted to Twitter, it received more than $100,000 worth of Bitcoins through hundreds of transactions."

That's already a tidy sum, but it was almost a lot worse.

Coinbase recently revealed that, while the scheme remained active, the company managed to mitigate losses by preventing the transfer of over $280,000 in Bitcoin over to the hackers—nearly triple the number from Cotten's estimate.

Of course, some still managed to slip through the cracks, according to ZDNet:

"While 1,100 Coinbase users were prevented from sending cryptocurrency to the fraudulent wallet, within the small window of time between the scam being launched and blacklisting, 14 Coinbase users were still able to send $3,000."

And the hackers only used 45 of the 130 Twitter accounts they attacked to send out the cryptocurrency scam. Imagine the numbers if more of these messages had been distributed.