The following chapters offer a small introduction to popular scam schemes and how these work. Please read through this section carefully and see if any applies to your situation.
Mobile wallets are a great option when it comes to storing cryptocurrency, especially for those relatively new to industry. Nowadays, most of the available crypto wallets offer state of the art UI and non-custodial storage, which makes them even more secure.
And while this development has been great, it has given rise to another scam technique. When browsing through all the available wallets on the Google Play Store, you might notice several fake apps impersonating legit wallet options. Even though Google actively pursues and deletes these kinds of apps, they always come back looking more legit than before. These apps give their creators direct access to your private keys, allowing them to steal your coins or lock you out of your account.
To ensure you don’t fall victim to fraudulent wallets visit the official website of the wallet, click through to find the official app on the Google Play Store, and make sure you check the number of user downloads before installing it on your device.
Blackmail & email scams
Blackmail has given a bad reputation to Bitcoin. Scammers will first attempt to obtain remote control of your desktop device through email phishing. If you click within the links of a fraudulent email they automatically obtain remote control of your computer and steal personal (and intimate) information. The scammers then requests a certain amount of Bitcoin to delete the material. Failure to do so could result in your personal information being sent across your contacts and social network.
To avoid falling victim to such scams, simply do not click on ads or emails that seem suspicious or hard to understand. Especially when it comes to emails, always check the sender’s email address and cross-check it online to discover if the sender is legitimate.
Tech support scams are usually performed through phone calls. Within the context of cryptocurrency, fraudsters will call unsuspected users of popular exchanges and impersonate their customer support staff.
Through a series of manipulative questions, the scammers will eventually ask for your account details in order to log into your account and send all your funds to their accounts.
To avoid falling victim to tech support scams consider the following:
- Never give your account details (or 2FA) to anyone. Customer support staff will never ask for such information.
- Only contact the support channel of your exchange through their live chat function or by opening a ticket.
- Never send your funds to wallet addresses indicated by people claiming to be support agents. Once again, real support agents will never ask for this information.