As technology continues to advance and we have more savings and investment options, it also gives room to more online scams. Digital currencies have been making waves in recent years and like every other form of investment, they have their risks. Scams are everywhere online and the cryptocurrency industry is not any different; it might even be worse, as cryptocurrency transactions are irreversible. There are no third parties or any institution involved in the transaction, so when you get scammed, you can’t retrieve that money back.
If you have decided to trade bitcoins, you need to be aware of the scams and how to avoid them. Here are a few common scams you should know:
1. Impostor Websites
There are many impostor websites out there posing as the original and if you’re not careful, you will easily fall for the scam. To avoid falling into this trap, the first thing to do is to check the security of the site. You can do this by looking for a small lock icon on the left side of the URL bar and ensure it has “https” with the “s” signifying that it is a secure site. If you can’t guarantee that the site is secure, don’t use it, even if it looks identical to the original. You can also look for reviews on the tool or website, such as the bitcoin code review, to ensure it is safe and secure to use.
2. Fake Exchanges and Wallets
In 2017, the South Korean government and its cryptocurrency task force exposed a fake exchange known as BitKRX. It is easy to fall into this kind of scam if you are not careful, as they are often designed to look real and act as a reputable exchange. However, their end goal is to scam more people of their hard-earned money.
To avoid this, look out for platforms enticing you with promotional offers that are too good to be true. This could be a high return on investment or discount offers. They could also request for cash too soon, especially bonuses for depositing large amounts. When you notice things like this, do further research to ensure you are not about to send your money to the wrong hands.
3. Phishing Scams
This is a kind of scam that involves scammers sending you emails that look like it’s from your bank or a legitimate cryptocurrency company. These emails often contain links that redirect you to an insecure site where you could get scammed of your hard-earned cash. To avoid this always check the email address to be sure it is connected to the legitimate company they claim to be. Double-check the URLs to be sure you are on the right website. Take your time to look over the details sent to you and most importantly, never send your private key to anyone.
Scams happen all the time but you don’t have to be a victim. If you trade bitcoins or are just getting started, try as much as you can not to fall into the arms of online scammers.