Scammers profit from Turkey-Syria earthquake

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Scammers profit earthquake; Security experts have warned that fraudsters are using Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria to trick people into donating fake currency.

The scam aims to raise money for survivors. Who have been left without heat or water after disasters that have kill more than 35,000 people.

But instead of helping those in need. Sscammers divert donations from real charities to their own PayPal accounts and cryptocurrency wallets.

We’ve outlined some of the main techniques scammers use and tools you can use to double-check before donating.

TikTok Live content creators can earn money by earning digital prizes. TikTok accounts are now posting photos of the destruction, videos and TV footage of rescue efforts and calls for help.

The graffiti includes phrases such as “Help us for Turkey”, “Pray for us for Turkey” and “Donation for earthquake victims“.

One account, which went live for more than three hours. Showed a pixelated aerial view of destroyed buildings accompanied by the sounds of explosions. Behind the camera, a male voice laughs and speaks in Chinese. The caption of the video is “Let’s help Turkey. Giving”. Another video shows a distressed child running away from a thunderstorm. The live streamer’s message is “Please help us reach this goal,” a request that looks like a TikTok giveaway.

But the photo of the child is not from last week’s Earthquake. A retrospective search reveal that in 2018 The same image was post on Twitter with the caption. “Stop Afrin Genocide,” referring to the town in northwestern Syria held by the Turkish military. Its allies in the Syrian opposition, from which it drove a Kurdish group that year.

Another warning about prizes for TikTok: A AZ24 News study found . That 70% of TikTok’s revenue comes from digital prizes, despite TikTok’s claims that it needs less. A TikTok spokesperson told the AZ24 News: “We are devastat. By the destruction.” Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria and contributed to earthquake relief efforts.

“We also work hard to make sure people don’t cheat or mislead members of the community who want to help.

On Twitter, people are sharing inspiring photos along with links to cryptocurrency wallets asking for donations.

One account posted the same appeal eight times in 12 hours, with a photo of a firefighter holding a toddler amid collapsed buildings. However, the image used is not realistic. Greek newspaper OEMA reports that it was create by Major General Panagiotis Kotridis of the Aegean Fire Service using artificial intelligence software Midjourney.

AI modelers are prone to fallibility, and Twitter users were quick to point out that the firefighter has six digits on his right hand. To prove this further, we asked colleagues from the AZ24 News Blue Room technology research center (part of the AZ24 News R&D) to try creating similar images using the same software.

They ask the app for “a picture of a firefighter after an Earthquake Rescuing a small child wearing a helmet with a Greek flag” and was give:

Additionally, one of the cryptocurrency wallet addresses has been use for phishing and spamming since 2018. Another address was post on the Russian website VK along with pornographic material.

When the AZ24 News contacted the tweet about the appeal, they denied it was a hoax. They said they had a poor website, but answered our questions on Twitter using Google Translate.

“My goal is to help people affected by the Earthquake if I can raise money,” they said. “Now people in the disaster zone are cold, and especially the little ones don’t have food. I can prove this process with a receipt.”

However, they did not send us a receipt or proof of their knowledge.

Elsewhere on Twitter, scammers create fake fundraising accounts and post links to PayPal.

Ax Sharma, a cybersecurity expert at Sonatype, says the accounts forward news and respond to social media posts by celebrities and businesses to increase visibility.

“They create fake disaster relief accounts that look like legitimate organizations or media outlets, but then transfer the money to their PayPal addresses,” he told the AZ24 News.

One example is @TurkeyRelief, which joined Twitter in January, has just 31 followers and posts donations via PayPal. The PayPal account has received $900 in donations so far. However, this includes $500 from the newspaper creator who donated to their cause. Sharma said it makes the fundraiser look legitimate.
It’s one of more than 100 fundraising campaigns launched through PayPal in recent days asking for donations to support earthquake victims, some of them fake.

Sharma said donors should be especially wary of accounts that claim to be in Turkey, as PayPal has been inactive in Turkey since 2016.

“There are legitimate charities outside of Turkey that use PayPal, but when these fundraisers say they’re in Turkey, that’s a red flag,” he says.

Other things to look out for are anonymous donations and appeals that have raised small amounts of money. According to Mr Sharma, legitimate charities can be expected to have “large funds”, but many PayPal fundraisers have less than £100. PayPal has suspended the fraudulent account. A PayPal spokesperson told the AZ24 News: “While the majority of people who use PayPal to accept donations have good intentions, there are inevitably those who try to admire the charitable and generous nature of others.”

“PayPal teams always work diligently to review and ban accounts, especially after events like the Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, so that donations go to the intended uses.”

Twitter also suspended @TurkeyRelief, but the company did not respond to a request for comment.

About Peter James

Admin Peter James, AZ24News.com | Peter James is the admin of AZ24News, a news website that provides coverage of news and events in World. He has been with the company and has helped to grow the website into a respected source of news for the community. Peter is passionate about providing accurate and unbiased News for Everyone. He is also committed to creating a website that is user-friendly and easy to navigate.

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