Airdrops have turned out as an outstanding innovation in the cryptocurrency community. This marketing strategy rewards cryptocurrency holders’ wallets with new tokens and coins to promote new virtual currencies. Isn’t that neat?
Similarly, NFT AirDrops also present new non-fungible tokens to NFT holders. However, there are times when distributed NFT AirDrops are far from trustworthy. While posing as legitimate AirDrops, they might deliver something sinister.
Thus, let's see how NFT scams involving AirDrops threaten crypto enthusiasts.
What are NFT Airdrops?
As mentioned above, NFT AirDrops present awards to NFT holders to raise awareness about the existence of new non-fungible tokens. We can also interpret it as a ‘’small’’ token of appreciation and a way to lure new NFT holders into purchasing new non-fungible tokens that emerge in the marketplace.
This promotional strategy works in a way where brands send out free NFTs to random web wallet addresses. Also, users can get involved in the algorithm by subscribing to the brand’s newsletter, sharing on social media, trading at a particular time, and even keeping a certain NFT in their wallet.
And like in any other industry, these promotional activities aim to psychologically affect consumers to start talking about a specific brand and potentially consider purchasing their products, as they've just received a free NFT.
A recent example of NFT AirDrops comes from Blur, a VC-backed marketplace. New users are promised to receive airdropped gifts containing BLUR tokens. So, AirDrops are a popular technique to celebrate new launches and invite potential users.
Learn How to Detect Fake NFTs
So how can you increase the security of your web wallet and the NFTs you receive from AirDrops? If you follow the steps below, you are less likely to detect malicious activities and reduce the possibility of experiencing that in the future.
Before performing sensitive activities such as crypto transactions or NFT purchases, ensure that you use a secure network. Free Wi-Fi should not be trusted with such activities. It is best to return to your home network beforehand.
However, if you stumble upon a limited-time deal, you can safeguard your device against known free Wi-Fi dangers. It means installing a VPN for PC before you use your computer to engage in any sensitive activities online. A Virtual Private Network is an application that encrypts and reroutes internet traffic. Thus, it protects you against interception and IP-based traffic.
One example of dangerous NFT AirDrops is those targeting Solana wallets. Essentially, this attack aimed to capture victims' passwords and crypto assets. As soon as victims opened airdropped NFTs, they would be greeted with an update notification. However, the malware would steal cookies, passwords, SSH keys, and other information instead of installing a Solana update.
So even when you purchase NFTs, always be cautious and try working with verified marketplaces by checking out their website or social media account, as you can ensure that buying and participating in airdrops will be legit.
Avoid getting caught in conversations with fake moderators and promoters that reach out to you on other platforms. Also, remember to examine the metadata of NFTs and determine their location in the blockchain.
Review Your Passwords
If you care about keeping your trophy NFTs secure, ensure that your passwords aren’t easy to break. It’s simple - there are ways for cyber thieves to get an insight into your passwords across other platforms as your data gets stored together. Therefore, don’t use the same passwords on your crypto and NFT platforms as on social media.
The safest way to keep your passwords secure is to revert them manually and write them down on paper. That way, cybercriminals are less likely to break your passwords, and you will be the only one who can access your wallet.
Also, it wouldn't hurt if you'd activate any two-factor authentication and use other verification techniques that will give your wallet an additional layer of protection.
Try Using a Hardware Wallet
As the data we store on the internet can easily get abused, there’s a way to purchase a physical device (like a USB) that can store NFTs and cryptocurrencies and ensure that your tokens and other assets don’t fall into the wrong hands.
Owning a hardware wallet (also known as a cold wallet) will allow you to store your assets, passwords, recovery phrases, and PIN offline, which makes it a top-notch NFT storage solution. Also, some cold wallets own utilized secured chips that protect them from physical attacks.
Briefly, you can set up your wallet by purchasing it from a verified vendor, setting up the software, writing down your recovery phrases, connecting your digital wallet to your hardware one, and connecting it to MetaMask.
Although NFT airdrops seem like a great chance to acquire new digital assets, you must always be cautious and try to store them in your digital or hardware wallets safely. However, it takes work to register all the red flags, especially if you’re a rookie.
Cyberattacks happen constantly, and there’s always a chance that your wallet can be the next target. If you want your trophy NFTs to stay intact, take all the safety precautions you can, and good luck.
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