Several exploitative websites launched over the weekend aiming to separate credulous Libra investors from their cash.
Though Libra has not seen its public debut, the media buzz around it has piqued some would-be investor’s attention. While the majority of searches around buying Libra are focused on how to exchange it for BTC, according to Google Trends and Reddit, some nefarious scammers are hoping to ensnare the hapless trader in a supposed Libra pre-sale.
One site, calìbra.com, (note the ì) is a mirror image of Facebook’s legitimate website, calibra.com.
The artifice begins by switching the normal English i for a a grave accent ì. Those unfamiliar with Alcozauca Mixtec, Italian, Sardinian, Taos, Vietnamese, Welsh, Scottish Gaelic or the constructed language Na’vi, may have the unicode character – that at least one reporter confused for a bit of dust.
Like the URL, the customer-facing scam website has some slight differences when compared side-by-side to the legitimate site. Both websites have the same marketing materials, wording, fonts, color schemes, interactive displays, and slogans – although the fraudulent one looks askew.
Additionally, in the top right corner is a button that says “Pre-Sale Libra Currency,” instead of the social media giant’s welcoming induction to “Get Started.”
Clicking the button opens another webpage that claims to offer a 25 percent bonus for trading Libra. Better act now, as the pre-sale is 93 percent complete, the scammers allege.
Traders are offered the option to swap 600 LBR (Libra) for 2 ethereum, or 8,000 LBR for 20 ethereum, which is approximately the same one to one Libra to dollar conversion Facebook was intending.
While this particular scam – hosted in Russia, no less – is an obvious ploy to capitalize on the general incoherence of Facebook’s plan, some of the chicanery put online is of a more derisive sort.
Zuckbucks.cash offers visitors the option to swap ethereum for ZBUX, “an ERC20 token which can be used to do absolutely nothing.”
“Want to buy a cup of coffee with your ZBUX? Too bad! Need to pay your bills? Better use another currency! Want to pile on to Mark Zuckerberg’s already incredibly overinflated bank account? Now we’re getting somewhere!,” according to the website.
Indeed, if Facebook is behind zuckbucks, it surely would be the quickest and most convenient way to “feed Mark Zuckerberg’s insatiable greed.”
The masterminds behind zuckbucks promise to spend the funds they collect on gas and kick the remaining balance up to the dev-team. They write, “Just like LIBRA, Zuckbucks offers no inherent benefit besides putting your money directly into the pocket of the developers.”
Of the 1.5 million ZBUX available, 961,845 are currently in circulation.