Cryptocurrency Scams are Exploding: How to Protect Yourself from Cybercriminals
Commercial Appeal4 days ago
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Cryptocurrency Scams are Exploding: How to Protect Yourself from Cybercriminals

Cryptocurrency
Scams
Cybersecurity
Bitcoin
OnlineSafety

Summary:

  • Scammers are increasingly demanding payments in cryptocurrency due to lack of legal protections, irreversible payments, and public confusion about how it works.

  • Common cryptocurrency scams include government impersonators, online dating scams, job scams, investment scams, and blackmail scams.

  • To protect yourself, only deal with legitimate businesses and government agencies, avoid job-related fees, be cautious with online romances, be skeptical of investment guarantees, and don't transfer money on demand.

  • Report any suspected scams to BBB’s Scamtracker to warn others.

Cryptocurrency Scams are on the Rise: How to Protect Yourself

Cryptocurrency, like Bitcoin, is making headlines, but so are the scams that are becoming increasingly common. Be aware of these tactics used by scammers:

  • Government Impersonators: Claiming you owe taxes or fines.
  • Online Dating Scams: A new online love interest asks for money to help with an "emergency" that you can resolve by sending cryptocurrency.
  • Job Scams: Requesting payment for job-related expenses.
  • Investment Scams: Promising guaranteed returns with little to no risk.
  • Blackmail Scams: Threatening to release compromising information unless you pay in cryptocurrency.

Here's why scammers love cryptocurrency:

  • Lack of Legal Protections: Unlike credit cards, cryptocurrency payments don’t offer legal safeguards.
  • Irreversible Payments: Once you send money via Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency, it’s almost impossible to get it back.
  • Public Confusion: Many people still don’t fully understand how cryptocurrency works, making them susceptible to scams.

Here's how to protect yourself:

  • Only Scammers Demand Cryptocurrency: Legitimate businesses and government agencies never ask for cryptocurrency payments (unless you are buying other cryptocurrency).
  • Avoid Job-Related Fees: Don’t ever pay any fees to secure a job.
  • Be Cautious with Online Romances: If someone you meet online asks for money, it’s likely a scam.
  • No Guarantees in Investments: Be skeptical of anyone guaranteeing profits or big returns, especially with cryptocurrencies. It is a very volatile investment vehicle.
  • Don't Transfer Money on Demand: Your money is safe where it is. Don’t move it based on a call or urgent demand.
  • Report the Scam to BBB’s Scamtracker to warn others.

Remember, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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