In the time it takes you to read this sentence, R10,000 will have been lost to cryptocurrency scams. In the time it takes to complete this article, that figure will have risen to R250,000. Phishing; fraud; theft; hacking; it’s all rife. In the first two months of 2018, there were 22 separate scams involving thefts of $400,000 or more. Put it all together and that equates to an average of $9.1 million a day. Oh, and that doesn’t include 2018’s outliers – Coincheck, Bitconnect, and Bitgrail. Otherwise, the total would actually stand at $23 million a day.
Welcome to 2018, where $1.36 billion has already been stolen by cryptocurrency scammers, and this is just the start of this year. Even when the big three of Coincheck, Bitconnect, and Bitgrail are removed from the equation, that figure stands at a hefty $542 million. If that trend were to continue for the remainder of the year, hackers, scammers, and fraudsters would pocket $3.25 billion, which is the GDP of a small African nation.
Like 2 months back $50 million Cryptocurrency Scam Hits South African Investors. Over 27,500 people, including South Africans, Australians, and Americans, have been conned by one of the biggest bitcoin scams yet to hit South Africa. The truth is, it’s impossible to put a precise figure on the amount of money lost to crypto scammers on a daily basis. With a minimum reporting threshold of $400k, none of the countless “micro-scams” perpetrated on Twitter and Telegram every day make the list. The purpose of establishing a ballpark figure for crypto scams is because it sets a baseline that can be tracked.
There are also many Fake Bitcoin Wallets. Spotting fake Bitcoin wallets is a bit tougher because wallets primarily are about storing bitcoin and not buying or selling it. It has less to do with money than it does with the software you may use. Typically, fake Bitcoin wallets are just scams for malware to infect your machine in order to steal your passwords or private keys. Just like with fake Bitcoin exchange sites, you should trust your instincts and look for red flags. Does the wallet site use HTTPS? Is the name of the wallet site trying to resemble another reputable Bitcoin wallet by impersonating it? Outside of the obvious, it may be hard to tell if a wallet is fake. A good practice is to ask your peers if someone has used the wallet before. You can do this on the Bitcoin Forum or Bitcoin Reddit.
If the wallet is a downloadable client, another good practice is to check the site for malware. There are many sites for checking executables to see if they contain viruses. So choose your Bitcoin Wallet carefully.