wordpress blog stats
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

,

FBI warns people of surge in cryptocurrency-related fraud during COVID-19

The US’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has warned users to be on alert for a surge in cryptocurrency related fraud, including blackmail, work-from-home, and investment scams, as fraudsters are “leveraging increased fear and uncertainty” during the COVID-19 pandemic to steal people’s money and “launder it through the complex cryptocurrency ecosystem”, the FBI said. It’s unclear what triggered the FBI’s warning.

Cryptocurrencies have become commonplace, more merchants now accept them for payments, there are more exchanges, and thousands of cryptocurrency kiosks across the world. This makes their usage higher, as well as the potential for misuse, higher.

The FBI warned that such scams can unfold as people claim to have “dirty secrets” and access to people’s personal information, some scams involve donations, and others involve the getting people to make payments for non-existent products. Scammers can send threatening emails or letters claiming to have access to people’s personal information and “dirty secrets”, and demand payment in Bitcoin to prevent releasing the information publicly. “With the advent of COVID-19, there is a new twist on this scam. The correspondence claims that the writer will both release your information and infect you and/or your family with coronavirus unless payment is sent to a Bitcoin wallet.”

Fraudsters can ask people to accept a donation of funds — which is stolen money — into their own account and deposit them into a crypto kiosk. People can also be lured from trusted e-commerce sites offering products that claim to prevent COVID-19 to unrelated and unregulated messaging sites to accept payments in cryptocurrencies for non-existent products.

Although there are legitimate charities, investment platforms, and e-commerce sites that accept payment in cryptocurrency, pressure to use cryotcurrencies is a “significant red flag”, the FBI said. The US federal agency warned users to be avoid providing bank account information to others, and verify that a vendor is legitimate and accepts cryptocurrency before sending payments/donations.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Thieves have managed to steal $2 million in cryptocurrencies from panicking users in Asia seeking to purchase Personal Protective Equipment. Scammers posted supplies on trusted e-commerce websites such as Amazon, eBay, and social media marketplaces, and then lured customers to messaging platforms where they took payments in cryptocurrencies in exchange for a phony shopping label as receipt of the purchase.

Written By

I cover health, policy issues such as intermediary liability, data governance, internet shutdowns, and more. Hit me up for tips.

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

Views

News

India and US come to terms on how to deal with the equalisation levy in light of the impending Global Tax Deal.

News

Find out how people’s health data is understood to have value and who can benefit from that value.

News

The US and other countries' retreat from a laissez-faire approach to regulating markets presents India with a rare opportunity.

News

When news that Walmart would soon accept cryptocurrency turned out to be fake, it also became a teachable moment.

News

The DSCI's guidelines are patient-centric and act as a data privacy roadmap for healthcare service providers.

You May Also Like

News

Google has released a Google Travel Trends Report which states that branded budget hotel search queries grew 179% year over year (YOY) in India, in...

Advert

135 job openings in over 60 companies are listed at our free Digital and Mobile Job Board: If you’re looking for a job, or...

News

Rajesh Kumar* doesn’t have many enemies in life. But, Uber, for which he drives a cab everyday, is starting to look like one, he...

News

By Aroon Deep and Aditya Chunduru You’re reading it here first: Twitter has complied with government requests to censor 52 tweets that mostly criticised...

MediaNama is the premier source of information and analysis on Technology Policy in India. More about MediaNama, and contact information, here.

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ

Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Name:*
Your email address:*
*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

© 2008-2021 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ