The Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a warning on Monday saying that fraudsters are leveraging increased fear and uncertainty during the ongoing global pandemic to steal your money and launder it through the complex cryptocurrency ecosystem. FBI further warned that these scammers are targeting victims irrespective of their age.
FBI warns people to be aware of crypto scams related to COVID 19.
The FBI warned that scammers would tailor their pitch to the current situation, and even pose as newly-remote workers collecting “donations” via email, or some might also pose as charities that accept cryptocurrency, which is a major red flag, according to the FBI. There have already been several reports of scammers playing on the fear of coronavirus and frauding people off their money. Some scammers lured people into investing in a fake cryptocurrency scheme to “save” victims from the inevitable economic crash.
FBI warned that the scams might come in more traditional methods like blackmail, threatening to infect you and your family with coronavirus unless payment is sent to a Bitcoin wallet.
FBI advises people to do due to diligence before engaging with crypto.
The FBI advised people to use common sense, verify the legitimacy of vendors, stay away from their bank accounts, and report blackmail and extortion attempts to law enforcement. However, the FBI did not reveal what prompted them to issue such a warning. Earlier, scammers stole $2 million in crypto from panicking PPE-seekers in the Asian countries. As reported earlier, vendors on the darknet have also started listing N95 respirator masks and other protective equipment in exchange for bitcoin. The darknet markets are also offering packages named “Coronavirus discounts” or “COVID-19 end of the world special offers.”
So far, over 1,900,000 COVID 19 cases have been reported with over 119,000 deaths all over the world. The number of new positive cases is still increasing exponentially around the globe as several countries continue to remain under lockdowns.