As most of us are aware that the Bitcoin is a decentralized form of cryptocurrency. Also, it is believed to be the first cryptocurrency invented. Followed by other Cryptocurrencies such as Etherium, Dash, Ripple, etc. It is a peer-to-peer network that works on the Crypto network without any mediator and has no regulator or administrator. Like SEBI, for the Stock Markets in India, or like RBI, for the Banks of the country. Digital currency has no regulator like that, which is why Bitcoin Scams are getting more and more active today.
With the government’s increasing efforts to promote a cashless economy, and Bitcoin being the earliest cryptocurrency. Bitcoin has been gaining popularity among Indians at a very fast pace. With the increasing value of these currencies with no overseeing authorit Scammers and fraudsters are reaping the maximum benefits. Therefore, investors need to be more sharp while trading or investing their money in crypto.
Precautions that must be taken by every crypto trader to avoid getting trapped in Bitcoin Scams:
Beware of Fake Websites
There are a shocking number of duplicate websites on the internet. It may look and function exactly like the original website, but a fake. Therefore, one should always check for the basic signs of a website. Like, the small lock symbol next to the domain name, or HTTPS or HTTP before the link address. It helps prove that the server is secure.
Sometimes you may be directed to another website for the payment. It can be a fake URL and you might be transferring your money to an unsafe party. You should always check the URL twice to avoid such Bitcoin scams.
Impersonation scams are pretty common in any financial asset class. Such scams happen when a person tries to disguise himself as a trusted or a common source, or a part of any organization. And tries to lure the interested party into a digital currency transaction. Bitcoin Scams by swindling a government authority, credit card provider, banker, etc. happen quite often in this tech obsessed generation. Impersonators can also contact you through texts or Mails. They may offer attractive deals to the users and ask them to pay the amount through Bitcoins. Later, you may never be able to contact them.
One should always keep in mind that cryptocurrency is not regulated by government. So, if there are any emails requesting payments for anything via crypto, you should always cross-check its source before proceeding.
Scams through ICOs
ICO means Initial Coin Offering, which is more or less similar to an IPOs(Initial Public Offering – Stock Market term). Like IPOs, whenever new crypto is introduced in the market, the customers are offered to invest in it.
Sometimes fake ICOs are created by swindlers. And they ask the investors to subscribe to it in the unofficial market. Fakes lure people by offering them a chance to make an early entry into the currency. And get a chance to earn high returns when the coins get listed on the exchanges. Later, ICO never opens officially, and the user is left clueless and with no account of their money.
Therefore, knowing well about the source of the information is very important. Especially when you are trying to dive into the unofficial markets of the Crypto World.
Pump & Dump Scams
Here, currencies are bought in heavy quantities. It makes the users believe that the currency is gaining popularity among general investors for valid reasons. When in reality they just buy them to dump the stocks at higher prices and take advantage of the non-liquid assets in the markets. An investor should not jump forward to buy a currency just because it is rising at great speed. There must be a valid reason behind the rise in prices. And if you can’t find it, staying away from the currency would be the best choice for you.
Social Engineering Scams
Scammers target mental ways and methods to gain important information from the users. It is a part of the impersonating Scam. Phishing is one of the most common social engineering scams. Scammers send fraud emails by connecting themselves with a popular website. And try to convince the users to change their ID, password, personal details, or any kind of Private information. Which can provide them the information to access the account of the users. Such Bitcoin Scams are the most common ones, as they take less effort and can attack more users.
Phishing scams also target wallet keys. To access the crypto account, a private wallet key is required for every user. Scammers lure the users into opening their accounts through certain links, on which none of the data you provide would be safe. The safest way to prevent such scams is to avoid clicking on such links or verifying the email through the company itself.
Crypto Wallet is the place where the investors’ coins and currencies are stored. There are hackers who constantly try to find the weak link in the accounts of the Crypto users. Both the exchange and the users need to keep precautions to protect their Bitcoin Wallets from any hack attempts.
Exchanges must have effective security software to protect the user’s data from their end. And the user’s must ensure not to write their Passwords or Private Key data at an unsafe page.
The use of digital currency has been on a rise since recently. With the increasing usage of crypto and a rise in its user base, scammers easily get away after their crimes. The Crypto world can be very risky if one doesn’t have the required knowledge of the basic technical terms. It is not very different from trading in other assets. If a person has the basic knowledge of any other online trading platform, they are good to go. But new users shouldn’t divulge with an asset as volatile as Cryptocurrency for their own good.