Tue. May 21st, 2024

woman losses $158,162 etherum cryptocurrency scam

a deceptive cryptocurrency scam involving Ethereum, with a shadowy figure holding a smartphone displaying a fake Instagram post promoting a bogus Ethereum giveaway, and a warning sign with 'Scam Alert' in the background.a deceptive cryptocurrency scam involving Ethereum, with a shadowy figure holding a smartphone displaying a fake Instagram post promoting a bogus Ethereum giveaway, and a warning sign with 'Scam Alert' in the background.

In 2022, a woman fell victim to a scam, believing she was communicating with a cryptocurrency founder on Instagram. Recently, new court documents filed in Colorado’s U.S. District Court revealed that Secret Service agents, with the assistance of a private investigator, have frozen an account containing some of the scammed funds.

The scam was initially reported to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. The victim thought she was interacting with Vitalik Buterin, the creator of Ethereum (ETH), and was directed to a website featuring his image and a fake giveaway promotion. The deceptive Instagram post claimed that anyone sending 1 ETH coin would receive 2 in return.

a smartphone displaying a deceptive Instagram post featuring Ethereum's logo and a fake giveaway promotion. The background includes symbols of Ethereum and a warning sign indicating it's a scam, emphasizing the importance of being cautious with online cryptocurrency promotions.
a smartphone displaying a deceptive Instagram post featuring Ethereum’s logo and a fake giveaway promotion. The background includes symbols of Ethereum and a warning sign indicating it’s a scam, emphasizing the importance of being cautious with online cryptocurrency promotions.

After transferring $158,162 worth of ETH, the woman realized that the account was fraudulent. The sheriff’s office investigation suggested that the scammer was based overseas, likely in Kazakhstan, making local prosecution unfeasible. Consequently, the case was handed over to the Secret Service.

The victim then engaged a private investigative firm specializing in cryptocurrency fraud. The firm successfully traced some of the funds to an online account, which Secret Service investigators subsequently froze, securing approximately $17,000.

Paul Sibenik, CEO of CryptoForensic Investigators, commented on the case, noting that the amount lost was unusually high for such scams. He pointed out that these schemes often target individuals who are new to or unfamiliar with cryptocurrency, emphasizing the irreversible nature of cryptocurrency transactions.

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