The recent popularity in Bitcoin investment has lead to an extremely lucrative window for scammers. With 1 bitcoin approximating at CAD$14,000.00/USD$11,000.00 in value (currently, but ever fluctuating), it’s an obvious target. When dealing with cryptocurrency, we’ve compiled some typical scams to look out for, and how to avoid them!
The most common types of cryptocurrency scams:
- Initial coin offering (ICO) fraud – when a new bitcoin becomes available, it can be fake or a “spoof”. These fake ICOs will trick investors to essentially hand money over to scammers.
- Exchange scams – be aware of unrealistic exchange price discounts.
- Phone-porting – scammers will enter a user’s smartphone in order to take control of their digital wallet to drain funds.
- Fake digital wallets – these are untrusted apps that have built-in vulnerabilities or are pre-configured to malware exposure.
- Cloud mining schemes – some companies will offer digital space for bitcoin storage with “lifetime guarantees” and returns. This can be risky and a potential Ponzi scheme.
- Multi-level marketing – offering investors additional opportunities for a high price can be too good to be true.
- Bitcoin-stealing malware – this interrupts transactions or infiltrates the digital wallet
Check out these tips for how to avoid fraud:
- Research – the best way to help yourself is to inform yourself.
- Use two-factor authentication in combination with a password manager. Dashlane provides a safe and easy way to secure your passwords.
- Use an antivirus software and a FixMeStick virus removal device. Using McAfee in combination with the FixMeStick provides the complete protection while working on your device.
- Encrypt your internet connection with a VPN (Virtual Private Network). This avoid exposure of your information to others working on your network.
- For serious investors, consider designating a computer dedicated only to bitcoin use.
When dealing with funds on the internet, it is always better to be cautious. It never hurts to do a little extra research before investing, or moving forward with any step within the process. Always run a FixMeStick scan before getting started to ensure you stay confident and Malware-free!