Scamming is not a new thing in the world of esports, and it isn’t only limited to in-game currencies and cosmetics. Over the years scam artists have come up with a variety of ways to rip off victims who fall for the scams. In the past, we have seen scammers resorting to live streaming platforms like Twitch to fraudulently make an income off unsuspecting viewers by hijacking their accounts.
While we’re familiar with scammers impersonating individuals to do fake live streams, it appears like they’ve started using the names of big esports organizations to run ads on YouTube. These scams generally advertise free in-game skins for viewers and ask them to visit a third-party website.
The viewers are then required to enter their Steam credentials on the third-party website to obtain their reward. Needless to say, that website would be a phishing site designed to rip off the user input data and hijack their Steam account.
These sorts of frauds have been happening on the streaming platform Twitch for years, but Twitch is generally quick to ban impersonating streamers. For this reason, it looks like the scammers have made their way to YouTube, where they’re paying the platform to run their fake advertisements.
The worst part is that these kinds of frauds are working. While we don’t have the numbers on how many people are falling for these scams, the fact that the scammers are continuing to pay the platform to run their advertisements should speak volumes. It’s unclear when YouTube will find a way to permanently tackle this problem. But till they do, these scams might continue to rip people off their money, and their accounts.