$6726.53. This is today’s worth of one bitcoin. In recent years, cryptocurrency has gained momentum and quickly become one of the most highly coveted currencies in the world. While the cryptocurrency has become a highly valued commodity, the cryptocurrency scams surrounding it have become more potent and commonplace. More and more people are being robbed out of their cryptocurrency units every day. So, how can we protect against them?
If you are interested in cryptocurrency, this article will guide you to the best practices you can adopt to avoid cryptocurrency scams. When you deal with cryptocurrency, you are always at a high risk of a cryptocurrency scam. Some of these scams are quite innovative and sophisticated enough for anyone to identify it before it’s too late.
Due to the digital nature of cryptocurrency, you need a smart device to store or transact it. If a hacker is able to hack your device, he or she can not only steal your private data but also the cryptocurrency from your wallet. Even if your wallet is encrypted with multiple protections, they can use the stolen data to imitate you and access your wallet to steal cryptocurrency from it. So, how do we protect ourselves?
What is cryptocurrency?
If you are already an expert on cryptocurrency, you are welcome to skip this introductory section and move onto the next section. However, we still recommend you reading through it at least once.
Cryptocurrency, as the name suggests, is a digital format of cash. It allows you to make online transactions using the P2P Electronic Cash System. This way, the records of the financial transactions between you and the other user remains safe and publicly available for credibility.
The reason why people all around the world prefer to transact online using cryptocurrencies is based on its three attributes, “Decentralization,” “Open source,” and “Peer to Peer” network system which makes it safe and reliable for online financial transactions.
Many also prefer cryptocurrency due to the freedom they have with the transactions. There is no middleman involved in the transactions. While this may sound great, it is actually the reason how hackers and scammers target cryptocurrency users.
What are the benefits of Cryptocurrency?
One of the most important benefits of using cryptocurrency is free transactions. You don’t have to worry about paying bank fees (which is often a lot), exchange fees and rates. You will agree that some of the currency exchange rates are not reliable and can be very different depending on the region.
Due to its ability to transcend borders, many NGOs and social right organizations — that aren’t approved by Governments — accept cryptocurrency.
In some of the markets around the world, you can also buy electronic gadgets and other items using cryptocurrency. In fact, the infamous Dark Internet is famous for trading in cryptocurrency.
Cryptocurrency scams to look out for:
While there are many types of cryptocurrency scams (from clicking on a link to Man-in-the-middle attack) these are some of the general types of cryptocurrency scams you should be careful about:
This is one of the most dangerous cryptocurrency scams out there. This is more like a hacking attempt as the hacker intercepts in between a transaction going through between two victims by intercepting their data packets and even changing their locations.
What they do is that they send malware to you through an email or another source. Once you have the malware installed on your computer or let it run in the background while you are making a transaction, the hacker is able to change the end-point location of your transaction, thus luring you into sending money to the hacker.
Using your personal information:
Millions of users’ personal information is for sale on the Dark Web. All of this data has come from scams, hacking attempts and third-party sources. Now imagine that if someone gets his hands on your data, and uses it to access your wallet successfully, he can easily rob you out of your crypto money. You won’t even notice it before it’s too late.
Using a Public Wifi:
Much of the data is or can easily be stolen if you’re sharing a public Wifi with a hacker. The hackers can use advanced techniques to share your screen and thus, track and trace what you are doing online. It is extremely dangerous when you are carrying a financial transaction over a public Wifi.
How to avoid cryptocurrency scams?
- Always use a reliable VPN. (It will encrypt your data)
- Never access your wallet over a Public Wifi.
- Always use a trusted antivirus and security app.
- Don’t share your crypto credentials and details with anyone.
- Always be skeptical about the unknown emails you receive from anyone.