Ripple and its CEO Brad Garlinghouse have settled a lawsuit filed against the Google-owned video-sharing platform YouTube over videos on the platform that allowed scammers to impersonate Garlinghouse to promote XRP giveaway scams.
The giveaway scams managed to trick various XRP investors, with the founder of community-driven XRP data aggregator XRPlorer revealing on social media they cost Coinbase users over 940,000 XRP tokens, at press time worth over $440,000 according to CryptoCompare.
Scammers have long been impersonating high-profile members of the cryptocurrency community and not just on YouTube. On Twitter, they even hijacked verified accounts to change their names and promote cryptocurrency giveaway scams.
Ripple and its CEO sued YouTube over their failure to stop these scams in April of last year, claiming their failure caused “ “irreparable harm to their public image, brand, and reputation.” The motion described YouTube’s inaction as “deliberate and inexplicable.”
The complaint pointed out YouTube was not meeting the standards it set out in its own community guidelines to keep scammers and impersonators away. The motion claimed that Ripple informed YouTube of scammers claiming to give away free XRP on “countless occasions,” including from legitimate YouTube channels that had been hacked and re-purposed as scam-platforms.
On social media, Garlinghouse revealed the lawsuit has been settle and would see both Ripple and YouTube work to “prevent, detect and take down these scams.”
Last year, @Ripple and I sued @YouTube for failing to enforce its own policies by allowing fake accounts (impersonating my/Ripple’s verified accounts) to conduct XRP giveaway scams. We’ve now come to a resolution to work together to prevent, detect and take down these scams. 1/3
— Brad Garlinghouse (@bgarlinghouse) March 9, 2021
The CEO added that specific settlement terms are confidential but added that “it’s clear to all that without accountability and action, trust erodes in this industry, at a crucial time when governments around the world are looking closely at crypto.”
According to Decrypt, in an interview, Garlinghouse shared the settlement will see both companies together fund a non-profit organization dedicated to helping victims of cybercrime. Speaking to the news outlet, the CEO said he would be open to calls to reforming Section 230, a law protecting tech giants from being liable for the users’ behavior.
Ripple’s lawsuit against YouTube was initially dismissed by a judge who cited Section 230 and concluded that in “some ways” YouTube was “too a victim of the hijacking.”