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Top 5 Bitcoin Scams

BitForex Editor
Dec 03, 2020

When Bitcoin was introduced to the public sometime in 2009, it wasn't as popular and accepted as it is today. A handful of investors then risked a few thousand dollars into the then-new investment opportunity, and they made unbelievable returns on their investment. They were able to turn their thousands to millions in less than a decade. The tremendous increase in the value of Bitcoin in 2017 prompted the massive profits early investors got. This enormous increase in Bitcoin's value attracted more investors and increased the interest of people in Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general. This increased interest of people in Bitcoin has led to scammers seeing it as an avenue to scam unsuspecting people who want to invest in Bitcoin. This article exposes the most common methods scam artists use to scam people looking to invest in Bitcoin. Hopefully, knowing these things will help prevent you from falling victim to them.

1. Fake Giveaways

This method of scam is one of the recent methods scammers have come up with to defraud people of their BTC. This method involves the scammer claiming that a famous figure is doing a Bitcoin giveaway where the person is to send their BTC to a particular address, and then they get double of that in return. You know how that will end if you make the mistake of sending your BTC to these people. The Elon Musk giveaway was the most common one that stole more than $2 million worth of Bitcoin from people. The scam artists sometimes use Bitcoin addresses containing Elon Musk, or something related to giving a false belief that they are real.

To avoid this scam, you have to be aware that there are no such giveaways by these celebrities they use. Make sure you flag such posts or messages.

2. Copy And Paste Malware

The copy and paste malware is one Bitcoin scam that is both common and hard to detect. This involves scammers infecting your device with malicious malware that attacks your device's clipboard. These Bitcoin scammers malware does to your device because whenever you copy a wallet address, you intend to send BTC to and paste it into your Bitcoin wallet app. Instead of the address you copied to be pasted, the scammer's wallet address is pasted, and when you send BTC, the scammer gets it while the real person you want to send the BTC to receives nothing.

To prevent falling for this kind of scam, all you need do is to be careful of the type of things you download on the device, especially if it is a device you use for your BTC transactions. You can also fortify your device's security by downloading a good antivirus and keeping your device's operating system up to date, as they help improve your device's defense.

3. Phishing Emails

Phishing is a malicious practice that has been around for a very long time, and Bitcoin scammers also use this method to try to get access to a person’s Bitcoin wallet. They do this by sending an email that would claim that your wallet's funds are not secure, and to secure it, and you will need to click a link and log in your details. When you do this, you would have given these scammers your login credentials, and they will log into your wallet and take all of your BTC.

To prevent this, when you get such an email, check carefully to be sure that the email is coming from the source. You should know that they make these emails appear as real as possible, but with careful examination, you can detect foul play from silly mistakes they make. The second step is to scrutinize the link (without clicking on it, of course!). You will indeed detect something off if it is not from the source.

In a nutshell, avoid clicking on links sent to your email. If you want to check if the information sent is valid or not, manually type the site on your address bar and check it out.

4. Ponzi And Pyramid Schemes

Ponzi and pyramid schemes are hoax investment opportunities that have been in existence for a very long time. This kind of scheme is termed a scam because they are not sustainable. Why are they not sustainable? These schemes pay older members using money gotten from newer investors. So, when the down liners become very large that the number of new investors in the scheme cannot pay all of them, the scheme packs up. By then, the owner of the scheme would have raked in plenty of money.

To avoid falling victim, show no interest in any investment opportunity that tells you to enroll members before getting returns on your investment. Since people know of Ponzi schemes' dangers, they disguise in different forms these days, but they have the same central theme of telling you to bring in new members.

5. Blackmail

The blackmail Bitcoin scam is a popular Bitcoin scam that scammers use to try to con people off their hard-earned money. They are of two types. The first would claim to have hacked into your device, and they have explicit videos or pictures of you or your spouse and then threaten to release them to your family and friends if you fail to pay a ransom in BTC to their wallet.

Another variant of this type of Bitcoin scam is that the scammer will trick you into installing ransomware that would either lock your device or prevent you from getting valuable mails. They will send you an email to ask for Bitcoin so they can remove the malware. The bad thing is even after you pay them, there is no guarantee that they would act as they have said. They might keep asking for more and more BTC till you exhaust all you have.

To prevent this kind of scam, you will need to have a good and up to date antivirus installed and an updated operating system. Also, avoid downloading attachments from unfamiliar emails. There are ways you can get ransomware out of your device, and you can find out how by searching on google.

Conclusion

Many people have fallen victim to these wicked scammers, and many uninformed people will also fall for them. This article aims to create awareness about these common methods these scammers use to defraud people to make you know when you are falling into one. These scams can be very convincing, but a simple google search can easily prevent them. Gather enough information about an investment opportunity before embarking on them, and the likelihood of you falling into scams would be significantly diminished.

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