The YouTube scheme used images of Wozniack, Tesla founder Elon Musk, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and other celebrity figures to convince users to take part in a fraudulent cryptocurrency giveaway.
YouTube benefitted financially from ads on the videos, according to law firm Cotchett Pitre & McCarthy, which is representing Wozniack and others.
“If YouTube had acted quickly to stop this to a reasonable extent, we would not be here now,” Wozniack said in a Wednesday statement. “YouTube, like Google, seems to rely on algorithms and no special effort requiring custom software employed quickly in these cases of criminal activity.”
The Apple co-founder added that “if a crime is being committed,” Google and YouTube “MUST be able to reach humans capable of stopping it.”
A Google spokesperson told FOX Business that YouTube does not allow scams and removed more than 2.2 million videos and terminated over 1.7 million accounts for violating the company’s policies on spam, scams and other deceptive practices.
“We take abuse of our platform seriously, and take action quickly when we detect violations of our policies, such as scams or impersonation,” a Google spokesperson said.
As of June 20, YouTube users have lost more than $2 million worth of Bitcoin solely in response to the scam using a photo of Musk, yet the scam continues, according to the complaint
“The scope of the Bitcoin Giveaway scam at YouTube is vast and it’s still going on,” Brian Danitz, a partner at Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, said. “…The Complaint alleges tens of millions of dollars in cryptocurrency have been lost in this scam which could have been prevented by YouTube.”
Wozniack has repeatedly tried to get YouTube to block the scams but the social media platform has been unresponsive, according to the complaint…Read more>>