The Black Sabbath legend Ozzy Osbourne has fallen victim to crypto scammers, as his new NFT art project was targeted by criminals.
Enthusiastic Ozzy fans have been cheated out of thousands of pounds in cryptocurrency after a phishing scam was shared by his project's official Twitter.
Ozzy was involved in creating 9,666 digital bats for the 'CryptoBatz' project, which launched last week.
However, an old URL on the CryptoBatz Twitter was hijacked by scam artists, who set up a fake Discord chatroom using it.
Links to the URL were left on both Ozzy's and the Cryptobatz Twitter pages. Many of his fans thought they were heading to a trustworthy link to buy the NFTs, and ended up losing out.
One tweet featuring the dodgy link on the Cryptobatz account received more than 4,000 retweets. More than 1,330 signed up for the fake Discord, where they were asked to connect their cryptocurrency wallets to it for 'verification'.
So far, the scammers have made an estimated 14.6 ETH (ethereum), or around £29,000.
The co-founder of Sutter Systems, the company collaborating with Ozzy on the project, said that the blame lay with Discord.
“Although we feel very sorry for the people that have fallen prey to these scams, we cannot take responsibility for the actions of scammers exploiting Discord — a platform that we have absolutely no control over,” 'Jepeggi' told The Verge.
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He continued: “In our opinion this situation and hundreds of others that have taken place across other projects in the NFT space could have easily been prevented if Discord just had a better response/support/fraud team in place to help big projects like ours.”
The CryptoBatz were inspired by the infamous moment when Ozzy bit the head off of a bat on stage in 1982. These artworks were turned into digital tokens are now being sold as NFTs.
First appearing in 2014, a non-fungible token is a bit of unique non-interchangeable data that represents something in the real world.
They can be bought and sold using cryptocurrencies and are a good way to buy the original copy of digital artwork due to their unique 'identifying codes'.
NFTs use blockchain technology similar to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, but are different in that while every crypto coin is identical to the next, an NFT is totally unique.
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