Fraudsters are reportedly forking out hundreds of thousands of dollars to purchase mistyped website addresses related to cryptocurrency businesses in the hope of duping victims.
The Washington Post says mistyped domain names are used to lure visitors into thinking they are dealing with legitimate cryptocurrency businesses.
According to the report, one Brazilian male spent Bitcoin worth over $200,000 to buy mistyped domain names, including wwwblockchain.com, hlockchain.com, and blpckchain.com, between November 2020 and February 2021. The three mistyped domain names are designed to appear similar to crypto infrastructure provider blockchain.com.
The Brazilian also spent over $16,000 to buy conibase.com, which was created to look like popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.com.
A .com domain name costs about $10 on average when first registered. It can then be resold for significant profits on reseller websites by domain
Stony Brook University computer science professor Nick Nikiforakis told The Washington Post that conibase.com appears to be a “phishing tool kit” and is likely targeting high-net-worth individuals.
Zack Allen, a cybersecurity expert at ZeroFox, tells The Washington Post that conibase.com is a sophisticated spoofing website employing various detection avoidance techniques such as automatically detecting bot-like visitors and redirecting them to Google instead of the fake website.
According to the report, these evasion techniques are commonly used by cybercriminals to avoid detection and block unwanted visitors from landing on their fake websites.