Be aware of cryptocurrency scammers

Although the “cryptocurrency winter” is now showing signs of thawing, cryptocurrency investment scams are leaving many investors out in the cold losing hundreds of thousands of dollars.

South Australians are falling victim to cryptocurrency investment scams through advertisements found online and by downloading fake mobile apps. These fake apps often use the name and logo of legitimate companies and scammers create fake websites with this information to scam investors.

Unfortunately, the websites and advertisements look convincing by featuring modern graphics, offering chat support, and even using fake high-profile celebrity endorsements to promote their products.

The scam usually starts with small amounts invested and the victim may initially receive a small return. The investment quickly escalates to larger invested amounts and when funds are attempted to be withdrawn, an email asking to pay taxes is received. Even after paying the “tax”, many people are still unable to withdraw their funds.

As with any investment, you should consider your own circumstances and seek independent financial advice where appropriate before parting with your hard-earned money.

South Australia Police advise the community to:

* Beware of advertisements found on social media sites offering investment opportunities. Scammers use these platforms to lure potential victims and direct them to fraudulent websites.

* Never allow anyone to access your device to help you create accounts. Remote access apps give fraudsters full access to your phone, identity, and newly created cryptocurrency account.

* Do not send copies of identification documents such as your driver’s license, passport or health insurance card to people or companies you do not know.

* If you have an existing account, protect it by using a one-time password, implementing two-factor authentication, and keeping Recovery Seeds secure and off your device.

* Pay attention to grammar and spelling issues. A legitimate company will take great care to have a professional look on their site.

For more information on scams affecting South Australians, please visit

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