The value of Bitcoins has risen significantly over the last few years so it is no surprise that there are scammers out there that want to steal Bitcoins or take your money for no return. Here we will discuss the most common Bitcoin scams and how you can avoid them.
The Fake Bitcoin Exchange
Buying and selling of Bitcoins are usually performed using a Bitcoin or cryptocurrency exchange. Some of the exchanges will allow you to purchase Bitcoins in your native fiat currency while others will allow you to use other cryptocurrencies to exchange for Bitcoins.
There are many cryptocurrency exchanges available and more joining the group all of the time. Not all of these exchanges are legitimate and some exist to steal your Bitcoins or your money – or both.
To all intents and purposes, these exchanges look and feel like real ones. They will display real-time prices and have a trading platform. But they will just take your Bitcoins and siphon them off to their accounts or take your currency and never provide you with the Bitcoins you paid for.
‘Malware is a small computer application that downloads onto your computer. Recently there have been cases of malware that have keyloggers detecting all of the keystrokes you make. These can discover your private keys for Bitcoin or your login details to a cryptocurrency exchange.
When this happens hackers will use this information to steal your Bitcoins. You can download malware without realizing it and the cybercriminals are getting better at this with each passing day. Never click on a website link that you don’t entirely trust.
This is another popular scam. Thieves purchase domain names that are similar to reputable exchanges. For example, they might get their hands on Coinsbase.com rather than Coinbase.com.
They then send fake emails using these domain names and ask recipients to check their cryptocurrency accounts. They provide a link in the email which goes to their fake website. It looks exactly like the real login page of the legitimate exchange.
The user has to enter their login details which the hackers steal. Hackers can prevent the user from logging in to their real accounts and very quickly they divert any Bitcoins in their wallets to their accounts. You need to thoroughly check any link in an email that has supposedly come from your cryptocurrency exchange.
You may have come across websites before that claim that they can double the amount of Bitcoins that you hold or provide you with a guaranteed return on your Bitcoins every day. Nobody has the power to double your Bitcoins and with the volatility of the digital currency guaranteed daily returns are impossible as well.
If you see any websites making these claims then stay well away from them. There the only intention is to steal your Bitcoins. Sometimes they will pay out for a few days and then completely disappear along with your Bitcoins.
Bitcoin Cloud Mining
The thought of free money compels a lot of people to look into Bitcoin mining. It is very expensive to buy and run the computer equipment needed to do this on your own so lately cloud mining solutions have emerged where you can pay a company to do this for you.
There are some legitimate cloud mining services but there are scammers as well. It is not cheap to get involved with cloud mining and the scammers take your money and of course, they do not perform any mining on your behalf.
Additional Scam Methods To Avoid
Someone will contact and tell that you have some kind of adventure waiting for you behind the corner to start living your dream life and that you only need to invest in their company and you are required to pay with bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, it can even shield you, through threats or using embarrassing secrets against you and by paying them in bitcoins they will not spread the rumor.
These scam artists are very good at fooling people by using the digital currency Bitcoin. Cybercriminals have already scammed hundreds of thousands of people around the world and to counter more victims of these low-vibration thieves, there is a way to avoid the trap.
Keep in mind that scammers use deceptive information, such as false testimonies, warnings, and other user’s experience to cook up a story, then trigger feelings of hope and then trick you into the trap. Some of the scammers have gone so far as to threaten families to pay them in bitcoin otherwise they will spread the coronavirus.
Scam artists usually show up as a credible person either from government, family member, organization, or as a corporate partner. Don’t respond to emails, unknown phone calls that come with unlikely offers, especially when it comes to emails. One of the most important is to do a search on the net to find out companies that contact you, which are they? when making search online use keywords like “scam” “Complaint” or “fraud”
If someone calls and asks you to pay money for a service put on immediately if unsure please feel free to look up the number, avoid paying in advance via an exchange, they claim you have won a prize, do not believe it. Never disclose personal information to anyone you have not looked up to ensure they are credible.
Credible authorities do not usually contact people out of the blue and demand information and then ask for payment via, for example, western union or Moneygram. Unlike credit cards where there is protection, payments through these ways are difficult to get money back. These scammers have many different methods, it is easy to fall into the trap they can even offer a free trial, and then when the period is over, they continue to withdraw money from your account. So be extra careful to look over your account so that you can stop these ongoing payments immediately in advance.
Here is a list of places to get help when lost money to a scammer: