7. Common crypto scams

Monday 21st February 2022

From Blackmail & Fake Exchanges to Pump & Dumps, there are 12 types of crypto scams you should be aware of.

1. Blackmail

Victims receive an email claiming that their computer has been “hacked” and the hacker has hijacked their web camera and recorded “intimate” moments. The scammers then threaten to release the video online unless some bitcoin is paid to them.

2. Fake Exchanges

A “fake” exchange tricks investors by offering Bitcoin or other cryptos for a very low price. And then they steal your money!

3. Free Giveaways

Scammers offer free cryptos in exchange for a small “registration fee”. Once you pay the fees, they vanish!

4. Impersonation

Scammers create fake social media accounts that impersonate famous people. These accounts are used to carry out a variety of frauds.

5. Malware

Many victims end up downloading malicious software and apps. These apps can change crypto addresses when they’re copy-pasted from the victim’s clipboard. The result - you end up sending crypto to the scammer’s address instead of the actual person you want to pay.

6. Meet-in-person attacks

Never meet anyone in person to buy crypto. You could get robbed and even murdered! Scammers may also pay you in counterfeit currency in exchange for your crypto.

7. Phishing emails

Never engage with emails that ask for your seed phrase, private keys, or passwords. These emails may look authentic but remember that there is no legitimate reason for anyone to ask for your seed phrase, private keys, or passwords.

8. Phishing websites

People land up on phishing websites by clicking on links in fake emails and sometimes even through search engine results. These websites can steal your passwords and even fool you into installing malware.

9. Ponzi Schemes

Beware of schemes where you are offered a large guaranteed return in exchange for a small deposit.

10. Pyramid Schemes

Beware of “pyramid schemes” which promise you high returns based on the number of people you invite into the crypto network.

11. Pump and Dumps

In a pump-and-dump scheme, scammers artificially “pump” up the price of a crypto and sell it to unsuspecting victims. Once enough people have bought the crypto, the scammers disappear and the value of the crypto crashes to near zero.

12. Scam coins and rug-pulls

While there are many great cryptos, there are also many scam coins. Be careful while investing in new cryptos. Check out the team, whitepaper, website, and other available information carefully before investing.