Published Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2022, 3:04 pm
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Cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin, Ethereum and Dogecoin are soaring in popularity these days. Indeed, these virtual currencies, which are not regulated, can lead to profit for some investors.
But while many consumers are new to crypto, scammers aren’t, and they are finding all sorts of ways to run successful scams.
There are several schemes. Websites promising huge returns if you invest in crypto with the company. “Celebrities” offering investment opportunities in virtual currency via their social media accounts. Online love interests who either ask for financial help via cryptocurrency or seek to convince you to invest in crypto with them. And more recently, a call from a government agency or business warning that you must pay some alleged debt to avoid a bad outcome (such as arrest due to nonpayment of back taxes, your utilities being cut off, your Social Security number being suspended).
In the latter, criminals direct targets to withdraw cash from their bank account and deposit it in a cryptocurrency ATM as a mean of paying the alleged debt.
Cryptocurrency is the wild west of investing and deceiving. Make sure you understand fully the risks associated with this currency before engaging in any way.
Report scams to local law enforcement. For help from AARP, call 1-877-908-3360 or visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork.
With nearly 1 million members in Virginia, AARP is the largest organization working on behalf of people age 50+ and their families in the Commonwealth.