Linus Tech Tips hacked by crypto scammers

Emre Çitak
Mar 24, 2023

The popular YouTube channel Linus Tech Tips, which boasts a subscriber count of 15.3 million, has fallen prey to hackers who have replaced its tech hardware evaluations with videos promoting cryptocurrency scams.

This is the latest in a series of high-profile YouTube accounts being compromised, with hackers renaming well-known accounts and live-streaming cryptocurrency fraud videos. Linus Tech Tips hacked news has become a growing concern in the tech industry.

How was Linus Tech Tips hacked? Yesterday morning, the main Linus Tech Tips channel was hacked, with many live videos being broadcast before the hacker began releasing previously private videos to the public.

The account was subsequently suspended while YouTube staff members worked to regain control. Techquickie and TechLinked, two other Linus Media Group YouTube accounts, were also compromised and renamed with a Tesla focus.

Linus Sebastian posted the following video on his Youtube channel:

Although it is currently unclear how Linus Tech Tips was hacked, owner Linus Sebastian has acknowledged the issue on the Linus Tech Tips Twitter account, stating that the business is working with Google to get to the bottom of the attack and prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.

Sebastian has promised to discuss more specifics on the business’ podcast in the coming weeks. In the meantime, he mentioned this hacking as his ''worst tech fail''.

Hackers of the channel started two live streams featuring an Elon Musk photo

The hackers behind the recent Linus Tech Tips YouTube channel breach have been using the account to live stream fraudulent cryptocurrency promotions. Two of the streams featured videos of Elon Musk discussing crypto with Twitter's co-founder, and were titled "OpenAI ChatGPT-4: The Game-Changing AI Technology" and "LinusTechTips & Elon Musk Special Crypto Giveaway." The latter stream was taken down by YouTube after only 20 minutes of broadcasting, while the former lasted for 35 minutes before being taken down.

The malicious actors behind the breach have been engaging in a cat-and-mouse game with YouTube, as the videos were taken down and then put back up again. Both streams contained identical videos, with the only difference being a link in the chat section that directed viewers to a likely phishing site. It is believed that the hackers are attempting to obtain cryptocurrency wallet information from unsuspecting viewers.

This technique used by hackers is not new. Opera has previously warned YouTubers about hackers targeting major Youtube channels and trying to steal personal information about you with different links to promotional emails about their new browser Opera GX.


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  1. So close said on March 25, 2023 at 8:30 am

    It was worth it, watching a millionaire in the middle of the night naked stressing frantically in front of the computer, fearing his well-earned and fully deserved millions might have just disappeared.
    Turned out it was a nice combo of human error and googles spyware (made for your convience) that enabled this little episode to entertain us all.
    Oh well, at least he can afford to buy a new chair, the old one has some weird stains on it now.

  2. upp said on March 25, 2023 at 2:45 am

    It’s funny that people who teach other about internet security get hacked, but people like me hasn’t been hacked for over a decade already, simple rule don’t click files you fucking don’t know, use a sandbox like Sandboxie if you want to open untrusted files.

  3. Anonymous said on March 24, 2023 at 9:09 pm

    Seems all like a publicity stunt and everyone dumb enough to get fooled.

  4. John Wold said on March 24, 2023 at 4:08 pm

    When a hack occurs the original videos are made private, and the channel renamed. This way it is not easy to identify the original channel at first glance, and cause a loss on the number of subscribers.

    There is no incentive for the hacker to “release” private videos, this would make the hacked channel easier to recognize.

    When the hack is reported to Googkle/Youtube, the live streams will be removed and a script will be run to restore all private videos, this includes videos made private by the original channel owner.

    Then the channel will be temporary deleted, you will see a message that it violated the terms of service. It might take from a day to a week for the channel to be restored.

    1. Someone said on March 24, 2023 at 11:54 pm

      well, at the technical side. How many days google takes to recover Terabytes of videos ? Cloud is fast, for sure. But the channel otherwise ? I really liked his videos. Thankfully, their channels is back also. I re-subbed.

    2. basingstoke said on March 24, 2023 at 6:39 pm

      How anything “google” is getting hacked at all I don’t know, they have mandatory MFA which should make things a lot more secure, but just goes to show it’s all BS.

      1. Roger W. said on March 25, 2023 at 2:13 am

        Google’s MFA is crap. Unlike Microsoft’s MFA which has the option to go completely passwordless, Google lacks the option to entirely remove password from accounts, even though their help articles say its possible.

        But if you are really calling MFA BS then well, don’t know what to say.

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