The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has blamed social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp and Telegram for the loss of $1 billion through crypto scams.
The report, released on Friday, found that the amount lost in 2021 was five times higher than 2020 and six times higher than 2018. The FTC described the relationship between social media and cryptocurrencies as “a combustible combination for the fraud”. Investment-type fraud accounted for $575 million of the $1 billion total.
According to the report, as of March 31, the number of cryptocurrencies scammed was already half of the total amount of 2021. Between January and March 2022, more than 46,000 people reported being victims of cryptocurrency fraud, according to the FTC. .
Scammers are reportedly posing as border patrol officers, businesses, government officials, and potential romantic interests.
The commission said: “The main cryptocurrencies that people said they used to pay scammers were Bitcoin.
“Crypto has several features that are attractive to fraudsters, which may help explain why reported losses in 2021 were almost sixty times higher than in 2018. There is no bank or other centralized authority to flag suspicious transactions and try to stop the fraud before it happens. happens.”
“Cryptocurrency transfers cannot be reversed: once the money is gone, there is no way to get it back. And most people are still not familiar with how cryptocurrencies work.”
“These considerations are not unique to crypto transactions, but they all play into the hands of fraudsters.”
“Reports point to social media and cryptocurrencies as a fueling combination for fraud. Nearly half of people who reported losing cryptocurrency to a scam since 2021 said it started with an ad, post, or message on a social media platform.”
The main idea
Forex, digital and crypto entrepreneur David Merino added: “The FTC is right. There are tons of threats to your money and scammers are constantly taking advantage of potential victims. We created a high frequency trading algorithm in part for this exact reason. 30,000 people now use it because of its efficiency, sustainability and transparency.”
“We wanted to control the enormous risk in the foreign exchange market with a constantly benefited and audited system that was safe for the investor and where the capital is always in control of the person.”
On the plight of victims and the future of cryptocurrency with scams seemingly on the rise, he added:
“I spent 12 years in the military and have struggled tremendously financially. It disgusts me that people want to take advantage of the vulnerable through people who lack knowledge. Don’t just transfer your crypto. You are in control of your account. Be very careful where you are moving your money and before you think about why you are doing it.
“Social media is ultimately a communication vehicle that these people use. Increased and easy communication has its cons in this regard. But ultimately, the benefits of crypto, blockchain, and web3 far outweigh the negatives. Fiat gets heavily scammed all the time, we would never consider it as a bad means of financing, but we have to secure our systems so that the vulnerable are more protected using crypto.”
“I now have thirteen businesses and have certainly increased my success, there are opportunities out there. But I can’t stress enough. Be careful.”
The FTC detailed many ways to avoid cryptocurrency scams. Among the signs to watch out for:
Only scammers will guarantee profit or big profit.
No investment in cryptocurrencies is guaranteed to make money, let alone a lot of money.
Nobody legitimate will ask you to buy cryptocurrency to fix a problem or to protect your money. It is a scam.
Never mix online dating and investment advice. If a new love interest wants to show you how to invest in crypto or asks you to send them crypto, that’s a scam.
The report stated that people between the ages of 20 and 49 were most likely to have fallen victim to a cryptocurrency scam.