Crypto ripoff among biggest frauds out there, OPP warns | #DatingScams | #LoveScams | #RomanceScans

Southern Georgian Bay OPP team up with Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre to share message during October’s ‘Cyber Month’

One of the biggest frauds people fall victim to today involves investing in crypto-currency via an online platform that turns out to be bogus, warns Southern Georgian Bay OPP.

The detachment is urging everyone to be wary of such investments as they work to raise awareness in partnership with the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre during October’s ‘Cyber Month’.

With investment fraud losses totalling more than $300 million, this category represents the most reported losses in 2022, according to the OPP.

Police added that, as expected, the typical fraud offers get-rich-quick opportunities and higher than normal returns.

The frauds often result in investors losing most, if not all, of their money, police say.

“The majority of the investment scam reports involve Canadians investing in crypto-currency after seeing a deceptive advertisement online,” the OPP said in a release. 

Crypto-investment frauds typically involve victims downloading a trading platform controlled by fraudsters.

After investing and seeing their money grow in the trading account, victims are suddenly unable to withdraw funds.

A variation on this theme involves romance and investment scams, according to police.

Fraudsters find their victims on dating or social media sites. They develop a relationship and convince their new love interest to invest through a fraudulent crypto=investment platform, before they later disappear, along with the money.

Some of the tips offered by police to protect yourself include:

  • Be wary of individuals met on dating sites or social media who attempt to educate and convince you to invest into crypto-currency
  • If you receive a suspicious or odd investment related message from a trusted friend, reach out to them through a different means of communication to confirm it is them
  • Beware of fraudsters asking you to open and fund new crypto-accounts; they will direct you to send it to wallets they control
  • Question why someone is reaching out to you about an investment offer: Is this a conversation I would usually have with an unknown person? Does it make sense to invest in an opportunity based on the communication I had? Should I feel pressure or urgency when deciding to invest?

You can learn more tips and tricks for protecting yourself.

Anyone who suspects they have been the victim of cyber-crime or fraud can report it to their local police and to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre’s online reporting system or by phone at 1-888-495-8501. If you were not a victim, police urge you to report the incident to the CAFC anyway.

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