• Antonio Bileci
  • 22 July 2022
  • 2.9 mins
  • 399 views

Regulation via the Financial Services and Markets Bill have come through, even though there have been changes in government personnel and amid the crypto climate downturn. The FBI has issued a public warning against fraudulent crypto scams via platforms and applications which have led to US investors being swindled out of an estimated $42.7M till now. 

A statement published on Monday by the agency shows that cybercriminals have developed applications using the same branding and identifying information as legitimate crypto companies to defraud traders and investors. The FBI have seen that an estimated 244 people had fallen victim to these fake apps. 

One report was seeing cybercriminals convincing victims to download an app that used the same branding as an actual US financial institution, encouraging individuals to deposit their crypto holdings into wallets ‘related’ to their accounts. When said victims attempted to withdraw from the application, they would be asked to pay taxes on said withdrawals. This was however, just a part of the cybercriminals plan to force more funds from victims, as even if they made state payments, the withdrawals would still be impossible to release. An estimated $3.7M was defrauded from 28 victims between Dec 2021 and May 2022, as seen by the FBI. 

Between the months of October 2021 and May 2022, another similar operation saw criminals operating under the name ‘YiBit’ which saw at least 4 victims defrauded around $5.5M using similar methods of deceit, while another operated under the name ‘Supay’ in November 2021, defrauding 2 individuals by encouraging them to deposit crypto into their wallets on the application, which would be frozen unless more funds were deposited. One user also fell victim to a fake Ledger Live crypto wallet app, reportedly called ‘Ledger Live Plus’ on the Microsoft app store. The user claims the fraudulent app has already stolen $20,000 from him. Warnings of such fraudulent apps have become abundant on Crypto Twitter. 

In 2022, cybersecurity firm ESET uncovered a ‘sophisticated scheme’ in which Trojan applications disguised as popular crypto wallets would attempt to steal crypto assets from individuals.

A report released in June 2022 via the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) found that an estimated $1B in crypto has been lost to scammers since 2021, half of which were all crypto-related scams originating from social media. 

Conclusion 

The FBI themselves recommend crypto investors be wary of unsolicited requests to download investment apps, with Sekuritance these individuals can do so by verifying an app, and the company is legitimate. Through our portal individuals, along with businesses may conduct KYB and AML checks on said businesses, along with Onchain Analysis checks to specific Web3 wallet addresses to make sure they’re dealing with the right platforms and applications. Now this can only help individuals and businesses make the right decision, it is in the individual and the businesses’ hands to treat apps with limited and/or broken functionality with an element of scepticism to always keep their funds safe.  

Visit www.sekuritance.com today, and find out how we can help you implement a fast and effective onboarding system that gets results.

About Sekuritance

The Sekuritance RegTech platform provides a single platform for every eGRC need, including end-to-end AML/CTF, CECL, FCPA, vendor management, beneficiary onboarding, investor check, card processing MFA checks, blockchain wallet checks, cyber-risk assessments, and other RegTech or Business Process Management requirements.

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