Indians Falling Prey to Fake Online Sellers of Cryptocurrency

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Where there is money, there are scams. Cryptocurrency is no exception to this sad but very observable rule of thumb.

Lately, there have been reports of impersonators promising to sell cryptocurrency online and robbing people of their money. The impersonators pretend to be some cryptocurrency sellers on the web – using names/IDs of actual cryptocurrency sellers and getting paid by na├»ve buyers who send them money without meeting in person or double-checking the seller’s identity.

Once the scam artists receive the payment, they direct their victims to the contact page of the real seller whom they impersonated to get money out of the buyer.

Dave Scotese, a web-savvy guy from Southern California, who keeps an eye on what’s happening around the web, tells about reports of scammers selling advertised products, including cryptocurrency, targeting people from India. Scotese says that a number of people from India have lost their money because they sent a scam seller money only to be directed to the real seller and finding out it was not him/her who they had dealt with earlier.

As these scams increasingly target online buyers, there are alerts and scam-beware warnings on social media to check out before deciding to pay for something without meeting in person or receiving the product first. A Facebook page called Cryptocurrency Scams Exposed is one that updates people on different kinds of cryptocurrency scams.

These and similar cases of scamming lead to the question of protection and timely awareness. Scotese believes it is the buyer’s burden to stay safe and watch out for scams.

“Be sure that the site provides a way for previous customers to give feedback about the advertiser, and make sure the advertiser can respond on any other site to which they direct you,” he advises buyers. “You need to prove that the advertiser owns each account they claim to own. Remember that when someone tells you something, all you really know is that they want you believe their new claim.”