The events of the 1990s are repeating themselves. People all across the world are being encouraged to invest in a new financial miracle by Silicon Valley venture capitalists and New York City investment bankers. Our grandparents, as small-time investors, put their hard-earned money into companies like Pets.com, Webvan, and eToys. They lost everything when the bubble burst. From Main Street to Wall Street, venture capitalists, unethical CEOs, and bankers profited themselves at the expense of millions of ordinary investors, leaving them with nothing.
Is Bitcoin going to treat us the same way in 2018? Bitcoin is regarded as a gift from God by some, while it is regarded as the devil's curse by others. Some are ecstatic because it has brought them millions of dollars, while others are heartbroken because they have lost the last money they had.
Whose point of view is correct? Let's work together to uncover the truth.
Without a doubt, the cryptocurrency market is speculative, complex, and fraught with dangers. It's also quite volatile and susceptible to secondary activation. Most users on the blockchain network are familiar with scam efforts, virus and malware downloads, Ponzi schemes, and phoney and copycat wallets and exchanges.
More freedom in the bitcoin market offered hackers more freedom, which resulted in an increase in fraudulent activities. Everything began to become more complex.
Despite its many benefits, the crypto market is one of the most vulnerable to criminal activities, as it typically preys on people's confidence and unaware ignorance. It is not well-regulated enough to safeguard individuals from schemes that turn digital currency into a fraud-prone environment.
Why is Bitcoin so appealing to con artists? This is for a variety of reasons:
Few people are familiar with Bitcoin, and even fewer are completely aware of its characteristics and potential. That is why it is relatively simple to deceive others, as everything a con artist says or promises may appear to be real.
Everyone conducts their transactions in an anonymous manner, making tracing the transaction's owner or buyer extremely difficult.
The bitcoin industry is uncontrolled, and there are numerous concerns to be addressed. Scammers can carry out their fraudulent schemes and steal someone's Bitcoins in a variety of ways that do not violate the law.
Fortunately, the majority of the rules remain the same. Most scams can be avoided with a little common sense, and a little know-how can keep you secure from evil actors attempting to defraud you.
Let's look at some of the most typical Bitcoin scams so you don't lose your money. Learn how to safeguard your funds and what to do if you become entangled in the webs of scammers.
Have you ever gotten scary emails or messages like this: Blackmailing Gentlemen, have you ever received intimidating emails or messages like this:
I'm aware of your mistress, as well as any other secrets you keep hidden from your wife. If you don't want your wife to know about it, send me a $10,000 Bitcoin confidentiality fee.
Have you ever gotten one of those dreadful emails that said something like this?
I have all of your photos and want to use your image in pornographic videos and posters. You can, however, put a halt to me by paying $10,000 in Bitcoin.
Someone may demand your Bitcoin in exchange for your life, confidential information, pornographic photographs, or hidden relationships in many circumstances.
Someone claims to have hacked into your computer and is operating it via remote desktop protocol, according to an email sent to the Bitcoin owner (RDP). For example, he or she may have installed a keylogger and used a webcam to record all of your actions, which may be illegal or secret. There are two alternatives available to you:
To avoid spreading the information, send a predetermined amount in Bitcoin.
If you don't follow the hacker's instructions, you'll become a YouTube sensation.
Threats, intimidation, and pressure are used against people. They are mostly terrified and do not recognise that this is a scam, so they follow the instructions in the emails.
What is the mechanism behind this?
It is implemented by a computer rather than a human being who generates the messages. It delivers the same message to millions of computers, much like a robot. Typically, such scams are perpetrated from afar.
Scammers hide their IP addresses in order to avoid being identified. By the way, the FBI lacks the authority to extradite these offenders because their home nations do not let it. Furthermore, the law will not be able to defend you if you do not lose any physical property.
That is why you must look after yourself. Check the legitimacy of the email address from which you received an unusual email to secure your funds. If it's new to you, don't open it until you've double-checked its legitimacy, because hackers can infect your computer simply by opening their email.
Scammers usually offer to download a link or an application from an unauthorised website to your computer. You are also downloading Trojan Horses and viruses, which thieves can exploit to gain access to your computer, by downloading these apps and sites.
Before doing activities or completing transactions, you should double-check the website address in your browser.
If you receive an email like this, contact your local police department and the FBI right once. Scammers collect personal information from users in order to perform this type of scheme on thousands of people in order to separate them from their money.
Fake Initial Coin Offerings
Fake ICOs are one of the most effective ways for scammers to get their hands on your cryptocoins. Scam ICOs are one of today's most serious issues for investors, as they lose a significant amount of money when they fall into the traps of scammers.
When investing in an ICO, investors anticipate a profit. This is similar to a company's initial public offering (IPO) (IPO). An ICO differs from an IPO in that the coin has no value until people believe it is worth investing in.
how can we tell if an ICO is legitimate or not? Read this post to learn about all of the hacks that point to ICO scams.
Fake Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) entice consumers to invest in their coin. Scammers promise them large sums of money and numerous chances, but they receive nothing in return. Many people invest in it, and then someone steals all of the money from the investors.
Another fascinating figure to remember for all investors is that 90–95 percent of ICOs will be worthless in three years, regardless of whether they are a scam or not.
At first glance, The ICO may appear to be legitimate. As promised, the numbers rise, and someone may even speak up about "how it actually works" and how it has altered their lives.
However, when it comes time to recover your money, you may run into some difficulties with customer support. The company simply vanishes one day...along with your money.
Be wary of offers that seem too good to be true. Consider whether the claimed returns are truly sustainable, as well as what the figures indicate. If something appears to be too good to be true, it most likely is. Analyze all available information about a company in depth in order to arrive at the best decision for future collaboration.
If you want expert assistance, please contact the Cryptoauxiliary team to ensure that you are only investing in genuine ICOs.
Exchanges that are not real
Coin exchanges are specialised platforms where consumers may buy and sell Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for fiat money or altcoins. Bitstamp, Bitfinex, and Coinbase are the most popular exchanges. All exchanges are relative rookies in the cryptocurrency market, which is continually evolving. That is why it is so difficult to locate someone who can be trusted.
Even the most reputable exchanges, however, have a high rate of fraud. As a result, many people have lost a significant amount of money.
Bitcoin is getting increasingly popular, and more individuals are purchasing it every day. Unfortunately, dishonest people take advantage of the ever-increasing interest in Bitcoin by establishing phoney Bitcoin exchanges. They reportedly enable individuals gain quick and easy access to cheap Bitcoin by offering exceptionally competitive market prices. As a result, you should do your own research on the exchange where you plan to purchase or sell Bitcoin.
On eBay, the price of Bitcoin might be approximately 50% higher than the average market price. If the price of Bitcoin is currently at $600, it will cost $800 on eBay. On the one hand, this is a fantastic opportunity to purchase Bitcoin on an exchange and then sell it on eBay for a 40% profit. On the other hand, the practise demonstrates that the only free cheese is in the mousetrap, which we either don't notice or don't want to notice.
The plan is as follows:
The owner decides to sell his or her Bitcoin.
It is purchased by the con artist.
The Bitcoin is sent to the scammer by the owner.
The transaction is marked as authorised by the scammer.
PayPal requests the Bitcoin's tracking number from the owner.
The Bitcoin TXID and the buyer's confirmation of the transaction are provided by the owner.
PayPal disregards this proof for the reasons listed below:
Because there is no proof of an unlawful transaction, you keep the money and the transaction is completed.
PayPal flags the transaction as unlawful and refunds the money to the con artist, who now has his or her own money as well as the owner's Bitcoin. A bad feedback rating is also given to the owner.
Don't be concerned. There is a method for deceiving the cheater:
The owner advertises his or her bitcoin for sale on the internet.
The scammer purchases it and deposits it into the owner's PayPal account.
The owner makes a copy of his or her Bitcoin wallet as a backup. Then, on any business day, he or she sends Bitcoin to the scammer with no fees.
The zero-fee transaction is delayed in pools, awaiting confirmation, which could take several days.
An unlawful transaction dispute is received by the scammer.
The PayPal transaction will not be permitted if the transaction is still not completed, and the fraudster will not receive the owner's Bitcoin.
The owner should examine the wallet outputs used to pay the scammer and retrieve a transaction backup.
The owner can then send the Bitcoin back to his or her own wallet, or to any other trustworthy wallet. Don't go greedy with the fees because the success of this transaction directly affects your Bitcoin.
The owner is pleased since he or she has taken all necessary precautions to safeguard his or her finances, time, and anxieties.
Let's take a look at a few well-known and trustworthy exchanges that have been hacked by scammers:
Igot (now Bitlio) is well-known for its dubious business practises. Users stated that they were unable to withdraw funds from this exchange.
Mt. Gox, a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange, was hacked in 2014. It lost approximately 650,000 Bitcoins and declared bankruptcy shortly after the announcement. Over 24,000 consumers were robbed of their Bitcoin and, as a result, all they owned.
Coincheck, a Japanese exchange, was also caught up in a hacking scheme. About 500 million NEM tokens were lost by the firm.
EtherDelta was hacked, and a phoney version of its website took over. At least 308 Ether tokens were taken.
Bitfloor had a loss of 24,000 Bitcoins, Bitstamp had a loss of 19,000 Bitcoins, and Bitfinex had a loss of 120,000 Bitcoins.
Exchanges such as Bittrex and Yobit encouraged their users to participate in so-called "pump and dump" scams, such as buying five coins in two weeks. Telegram groups like Crypto4pumps and Bigcryptopumps used secret Telegram apps to facilitate their Ponzi schemes, according to Bittrex. There are almost 300 different coins and tokens listed on Bittrex, so be cautious because some of them can be easily manipulated.
Check to see if the seller has a good rating, if he or she is the true owner of the account claiming to have a good rating, if the seller has a history of selling products, and if the seller has a feedback history linked to selling.
Scam Mining Enterprises
The process of verifying and releasing new Bitcoin into the network is known as mining. Miners are those who work in the mining industry. They are rewarded with newly released Bitcoin in exchange for their efforts.
Mining today necessitates a great deal of processing power and energy resources, making it a challenging undertaking for the typical person. To acquire better and faster results, it is preferable to invest in large mining businesses or employ cloud mining services.
In the mining industry, there are a variety of companies to choose from, both legitimate and fraudulent. Mining is a valuable item for criminals to obtain. Recognize that even reputable companies may be participating in the scams. Keep in mind that there are a lot of persons that are trying to profit from consumer trust.
For example, the mining business Mining Max in the United States received roughly $250 million from investors, but only invested about $70 million on the mine.
Malicious crypto-mining, commonly known as "cryptojacking," occurs when criminals use a user's processing capacity to spread malware. They can use Trojan viruses, for example, to disseminate these programmes.
Digmine is a mining trojan. Monero (a private alternative to Bitcoin) is distributed using the Chrome browser's desktop version of Facebook Messenger and is stored as a video file on a computer.
WannaMine can harm a computer system by infecting it with a clickable link or by gaining targeted remote access. Because it is a fileless file, it is difficult to identify on a computer. Furthermore, it just takes a few days to render the computer useless.
People are gullible and still believe in a happy conclusion to a fairy tale. Scammers take advantage of people's naïve believe in manna from heaven by offering free Bitcoin or other digital currency in exchange for sending a modest sum to a registration or supplying personal information.
Such promises, however, are never fulfilled. Scammers attempt to steal the user's coins in this manner. Stop believing in miracles; your impartiality is required in this profession.
DO NOT AGREE if someone invites you to send Bitcoin to his or her wallet in exchange for a guaranteed return! This is a well-known ruse to locate quick cash to pay off earlier investors. As a result, it's possible that you'll lose your own.
DO NOT AGREE if you are requested to provide personal information such as your name, address, email address, or phone number in order to collect a prize.
The hacker can use this information to impersonate you and gain access to your accounts.
Please report this email as a scam so that others are not harmed.
Unfortunately, con artists can easily pass themselves off as someone else. They build false accounts on social media that look quite similar to the real ones, post fraudulent content, and even advertise free giveaways. People might not suspect fraud efforts since everything appears natural.
Scammers also deceive people by sending communications on their behalf in order to defraud or compromise them.
Don't take part in free giveaways or respond to messages from people you don't know. You can double-check their account's legitimacy using a variety of contact methods.
Viruses, malware, and other deceptive applications proliferated during the Internet era. Hackers' imagination is limitless when it comes to devising new tricks. Some malicious programmes, for example, can alter the address of a transaction you are willing to complete. That is why it is critical to double-check the address to which you are sending your Bitcoin, as you may be sending it directly to hackers. There is no way to modify the data once the network approves the transaction.
The Cryptoshuffler is well-known for infiltrating systems and then lurking in the background until the appropriate moment arrives.
This malware begins to act when a user inserts characters and digits that resemble a cryptocurrency wallet address. It replaces that address with the address of the Cryptoshuffler's wallet. If a user does not notice the incorrect address while confirming the transaction, all Bitcoins are sent to the hacker's wallet rather than the legitimate buyer. Approximately 23 Bitcoins (almost $180,000) have been transmitted to the Cryptoshuffler wallet address as of November 2017.
Don't forget to check if any of the programmes on your computer have administrative privileges. In this case, a trusted virus scanner can be really beneficial.
These suggestions can also help you defeat malware:
Use two-factor authentication on a regular basis.
Having a “cold” offline wallet is a good idea. Because it is not connected to the internet, a cold wallet is said to be the safest way to store Bitcoin. This means that remote hacking is not possible. Because it is internet-dependent, a "hot" wallet provides less security. This means that anyone with an internet connection can use this form of wallet.
Today, an increasing number of hackers are requesting to meet Bitcoin owners in person to execute exchanges. Meeting this individual if you don't know him or her could be dangerous because the scammer could rob or hurt you. The scammer could even use counterfeit fiat currency to make the purchase. Instead of meeting in person, use a peer-to-peer platform to escrow money.
They would never ask you to provide your password or click on a link to interact with your account. Also, even if they offer a share of the funds in exchange for your assistance, do not respond to emails from strangers asking you to aid them by giving coins.
Some emails are quite difficult to distinguish from the genuine thing. Meanwhile, the hacker is attempting to get you to give up your password. Whether you're unsure, send this email to your company again to see if it's legitimate.
If you're not sure if a website or piece of software is genuine, don't instal it or log in. Phishing websites can impersonate sponsors of the company you're using. It's a good idea to double-check that you're downloading a legitimate software.
The financial pyramid is the foundation of most companies that have raised millions of dollars. A pyramid scam promises that everyone who joins the company will receive a particular reward based on how many people they refer to join. This is also used in the cryptocurrency hoax business. In most cases, it fails miserably. In a pyramid like this, the only ones who benefit are the scammers, not the members or those who have joined.
Do not bring your friends to dubious businesses in the hopes of receiving a reward, and do not invest your own money in these initiatives, as they are almost always scams.
How Can You Keep Your Bitcoin Safe?
We must recognise that the most prevalent frauds involving Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are not necessarily perpetrated by novices. Some of these ruses are extremely well-planned and executed. This means that everyone, including those who are knowledgeable and skilled in blockchain technology, is vulnerable and can be conned.
Even Steve Wozniak, Apple's co-founder, fell victim to a Bitcoin fraud. He was willing to sell seven Bitcoins to someone who bought them using a stolen credit card. Both the money and the Bitcoins were taken by the con artists.
The conclusion is that even specialists might fall victim to schemes. Furthermore, this is only the beginning; new (and possibly more sophisticated) schemes will emerge soon. We must be fully prepared and vigilant at all times.
It makes no difference whether you wish to invest in Bitcoin or simply hold onto some for the time being. Ensure that your wallet is completely secure, and that your assets are kept safe and secure.
To avoid getting conned and losing money, follow these guidelines:
Keep your secret keys safe.
Keep in mind that anyone who has access to your private keys can take control of your Bitcoin. Keep your private keys safe at all times. If you use third-party wallets, you must give them access to your keys. As a result, you should only work with the most reputable companies.
Before making a selection, do your own extensive study.
If you've been duped, chances are someone else has been duped before you. Learn as much as you can about any services you're considering using, and be aware of any potential dangers and outcomes. Keep in mind that everything that has happened to someone else could also happen to you.
Examine all respectable review sites and forums to determine if there is anything out of the ordinary about them.
Pay attention to the warning indicators that are common.
Scammers do employ the best marketing strategies to get as much attention as possible for their projects. However, misspellings and grammatical errors, a lack of information, and a phoney social media presence are all red flags to be aware of.
Nobody needs to know how many Bitcoins you have.
This is especially important if you have a significant Bitcoin balance. Don't come across as a large fish looking to be caught.
Use a virtual private network (VPN).
You can use a Virtual Confidential Network (VPN) to access the Internet anonymously so that no one, including your ISP, can track your activities, find out which exchanges and wallets you use, and where you store private information and keys.
Do not use public wifi networks to access your accounts, as they can be easily hacked or used to mine your computer. Another important tool for securing your wifi connection is a VPN.
Never stop learning new things.
It is a well-known fact that only a small percentage of individuals read the instructions for the equipment they purchase. Bitcoin is the same way. If you want to invest in cryptocurrencies, stay informed at all times. One of the leading causes of investment failure is a lack of understanding of the bitcoin market. Another cause is jumping on social media advice or interpreting price surges as signals to enter. If you don't keep learning, observing, and listening, you'll end up as just another person drowning in debt and worry.
Have faith in your instincts.
Do not participate in something if you believe it is false and could result in financial loss.
If something appears to be too good to be true, it almost certainly is.
Even if something seems like a pyramid scheme, even if it's a well-developed pyramid scheme, and others have become rich from it, that doesn't indicate it'll happen to you.
If something works for one individual, it does not necessarily guarantee that it will work for you.
We found which types of scams are the most common nowadays, and which could happen to you, after a long voyage through the fraudulent bitcoin market.
You must realise that anything you've read on the internet could also become your reality. Your Bitcoin's security is dependent on your awareness and prudence, therefore make sure you're safe so you can sleep soundly at night knowing your Bitcoin is secured.