The online world is full of possibilities and great opportunities. The number of these windows are growing day by day, however, not all of them are legit. While some of them are real, the others are just too good to be true. In this online world where everyone and everything can have a mask, it is hard to tell which is which. Especially in the cryptocurrency domain. These digital monetary coins have been around for a little bit over a decade now, however, they have just started to get wind to themselves in the most recent years.
Bottom line: cryptocurrency is still considered a new subject to the general public. Scammers take advantage of that and take all the possible actions to try and trap you. Especially if the process you’re trying to execute involves a chunk of money.
When a process involves money, scams tend to show up at a higher rate and become more dangerous as the amount of money goes up. It can be especially daunting to face and tell these scams apart from the real deals when you are still new to this crypto world. When you are just starting out, everything sounds amazing, but you are also skeptical about everything. You are probably even scared to execute any type of process because the back of your mind screams “Beware of scammers”, but you also have no idea how to know if something is upfront or not.
It doesn’t have to be this scary though! We got you! In this article, we have gathered the most common cryptocurrency scams for you so you can avoid it at all costs! This way you’ll know if you’re getting scammed or not. It is important to educate yourself about the types of scams you are against in order to be able to avoid them. We have also included ways to avoid scammers and have the best experience in the cryptocurrency world!
This is the number one reason why people get scammed. There are numerous websites that have been set up by scammers to fool you and profit off of you. These websites look exactly the same as a legit website would from a legit company.
Maybe you got the tip to use this site and company from a pro? It doesn’t matter, it is your responsibility to check and find out if the site you are trusting with your assets is the real deal. This isn’t an “I got to take a leap of faith” kind of situation.
How can you make sure if the site is legit? Here is a quick checklist that can help you decide whether you tumbled upon a real site or not.
1. Missing Small Lock Symbol
First off, you have to check if the site is secure. How can you tell? Well, I am glad you asked! If there isn’t a small lock icon next to or near the websites’ URL (the security indicator icon’s location depends on the search engine you use) then you should be concerned. Lack of the small lock (often is portrayed in a shield especially on Windows) means that the website is not supported therefore it’s not secure. Legit cryptocurrency websites are always marked as secure.
2. Missing “https”
Another dangerous tell-tale sign of a fake site is the missing “https” in the search bar.
“Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (https) is a combination of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) with the Secure Socket Layer (SSL)/Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol. TLS is an authentication and security protocol widely implemented in browsers and web servers. SSL works by using a public key to encrypt data transferred over the SSL connection. Most Web browsers support SSL. It allows you to communicate securely with the web server.”
3. Redirection To Another Platform
You have come across a website that feels legit, looks legit, and checks off all of your requirements, and as you are about to be finished with your transactions you get redirected. We all know that “what is happening” feeling when we feel achieved but then suddenly something goes wrong. This is a strong indication of a scam you are about to be pulled into.
Redirection from the original site to another site, even if the other site is similar looking, is a sign of harmful activity and you should always close and stop all activities on these sites. You’ll know if you are getting scammed if you are doing your work on one site then you are redirected to pay on a similar site!
You can avoid this by double-checking your original URL first, then type the exact URL into the browser yourself. Don’t take any redirections to any external sites!
Fake Mobile Apps
The places scammers can reach you have expanded. Phones present a special kind of danger to your assets. Most of the time you don’t have to go to Google or Safari on your phone to reach cryptocurrency websites, because it is made easier for you: you got apps. Which are great but most of the time than not, they take away your right, that they transform into a privilege, to check and make sure that a website is legit and safe. As you can check the security of a website on a desktop or laptop you could check it on your phone too if you are willing to use a browser.
However, most browser phone experiences are tacky, since many websites are not formatted to fit mobile phones. Plus we all love comfort and apps were invented just for that! To deliver user-friendly comfort. This is great, we all love apps, they make everything so much easier, but now we have to pay much more attention to our security, especially if it’s about cryptocurrency.
Some of the most straightforward tell-tale signs of a phony app is the spelling, inauthentic look, and incorrect logo. You should always check if the name or anything in regards to the app is spelled wrong. Especially if the name or the app only differs in one letter from the original. Is the design tacky, the quality good-for-nothing? Is the logo the real deal? You should always double-check the logo since logos can be minorly altered, it can be such a small change that you wouldn’t even know of or see at first sight but it could be a big sign of a scam.
Fake Social Media Accounts And Posts
Today the best and not to mention free advertising is social media. There are so many big personalities present, giving you tips about cryptocurrency, which to an extent is great, learn from the best to be the best! And in a perfect world that would be the main principle, but in today’s society, nothing’s that easy. There are many impersonators who take advantage of the fame of other people and try to scam you using them and their influence. Before acting on anything that is advised on the internet by someone who you admire, you should check first if the account is authentic, and only put money into the process when you have checked every safety precaution. If something smells fishy around the situation, don’t proceed. Also, check if the person has warned their followers of potential impersonators on the platform.
If you see a ton of people reacting and responding to the post or announcement, still proceed with caution, you can never know if those people are bots or not, or if the comments and reactions are legit or not.
Marketing emails are so popular nowadays and everything looks so professional. Even if an email looks legit, there are a couple of things that you should be aware of!
First off, you should always check if the email address is official and has no spelling errors or it’s not spelled differently. Also, trace back the email to the company and if it’s not traceable then it’s most likely a scam. Check the language of the email. Is it correct, does it use the same wording, is the writing style different? Often sloppy writing styles or using a different writing style is an indicator of scammers. Also, the logo is a huge tell-tale sign of a scam. You should always pay close attention and investigate if the logo is the same. Even the smallest change in the logo can mean that you are about to be scammed.
To make sure that you are safe at all times from scammers, never click on a link in the emails you get.
Bottom line: there are many ways you can get scammed, and quite fairly, these ways grow every day since scammers tend to be able to fool and pull off scams of anyone! Luckily with the right knowledge, which is not necessarily experience, since even pros are known to be scammed from time to time, you can avoid these.
When it comes to security there is one thing that you can use in any kind of situation in order to avoid cryptocurrency scammers. Whether it’s a social media scam, a website or app scam, or even an email scam. It all boils down to one thing: and that’s fact-checking. Tracing every information back to the original source can save you money and many headaches. It takes time to make sure if something is for real or not, but better safe than sorry, especially in the case of cryptocurrency. If you can trace back everything to the original company and source and everything checks out everything matches, then you are good to go, but if even a letter differs, that is most likely not a typo and you are most likely getting into some type of scam.
Just remember: in order to avoid scams, pay attention to your source and check everything that you can to make sure that you are getting the real deal.