Banco Santander UK warns of growing celebrity-backed crypto scams

Banco Santander UK warns of growing celebrity-backed crypto scams

Banco Santander UK warns of growing celebrity-backed crypto scams By DailyBitcoin Editor

Banco Santander UK warns that celebrity-backed crypto scams may grow by up to 87% this year.

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  • Banco Santander warns about crypto scams
  • Says they can grow 87% this year, according to research
  • The first quarter of 2022 already rose 87%

There are many warnings that have arisen in relation to the different methods to scam with cryptocurrencies. In fact, governments of several countries have already agreed prevention campaigns on the modalities of cheating. Now it’s being done by a major bank, specifically with one that’s fairly common and tends to land a lot of victims: falsely “endorsed” celebrity crypto scams.

Banco Santander, based in the United Kingdom, published a statement in which it shares important data on this type of scam, alerting the population that they are growing.

According to Santander data, these are some of the data collected in an investigation:

– Average scam value in Q1 2022: £11,872 (over $14,400 USD), up 65% more year over year.
– 61% increase in case volume in the first quarter of 2022, relative to the last quarter of 2021.
– Based on current growth, the bank expects an 87% increase in case volume in 2022 compared to 2021.

modus operandi

Chris Ainsley, Director of Fraud Risk Management at Santander UK, said: “We are seeing a worrying rise in ‘celebrity-endorsed’ cryptocurrency scams, in which familiar faces are misused on social media to swindle people out of large sums of money.” He adds that after being lured by the supposedly high promised returns, people lose significant sums after being duped by these highly sophisticated criminals. “Always do your homework and thoroughly research any investment opportunity before moving any money, regardless of who is behind it.”

How the scam usually works:

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1. The client sees a celebrity advertising a cryptocurrency on social networks, Google or even on reputable media sites, or another social media user presents you with a cryptocurrency investment opportunity. The celebrity seems to be endorsing the opportunity.
2. The customer clicks on a link and shares their contact details for more information.
3. They are then contacted by phone, email, or social media and offered a high return on crypto investment with little to no risk. The scammer will often employ high pressure sales tactics.
4. They are asked to download a software specialized to help them open cryptocurrency accounts. This is remote access software that gives the scammer full access to the customer’s computer.
5. The client opens (often multiple) cryptocurrency accounts and deposits money into them.
6. The scammer freezes access and takes over the customer’s account, preventing the customer from accessing their money.

Santander studied a case

In its press release, the bank publishes a typical case for its followers to be aware of:

• Mr. G saw a Facebook post announcing a cryptocurrency investment opportunity, which was apparently endorsed by renowned English financial journalist Martin Lewis. Mr. G clicked on the link to register his interest and was then contacted by someone claiming to be his personal “account manager” of the cryptocurrency platform, who promised high returns on his investment.
• Mr. G followed the advice of his “account manager” and opened a separate bank account and transferred money from his Santander account to the new account.
• He was then encouraged to allow his “account manager” to access his computer remotely to help him make payments from his newly opened bank account to his cryptocurrency wallet. Mr. G was able to see the money coming out of his bank account and being credited to his cryptocurrency wallet, but he had no control over the wallet.
The scammer told Mr. G to lie to his bank about the reason for the payment because your bank would not want you to invest in cryptocurrencies. As such, when Santander contacted Mr. G to verify the payments to the new bank account, he followed the so-called advice of his “account manager” and provided a false reason as to the purpose of the payment.
• After receiving a series of follow-up calls from his “account manager” asking him to deposit more money into his account and talking to his family, he realized he was being scammed and contacted Santander to report it.

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To do?

Banco Santander tells its customers that if you think you have been the victim of a cryptocurrency scam, report it to your bank immediately.

Also, if you have downloaded software supposedly to help with investing, turn off and unplug your computer and do not use it until you have removed the software and it has been reviewed by a computer technician.
If you think you have already been a victim of this type of scam, report it to your bank immediately.

How to protect yourself:

• An investment endorsed by a celebrity in crypto assets or crypto-related products does not mean that it is a genuine endorsement or a legitimate investment.
• Don’t let anyone set up a cryptocurrency wallet, upload identification documents, or manage investments remotely on your behalf.
• Avoid unsolicited investment offers, whether made on social media or over the phone. If you are considering making an investment, first thoroughly research the company and consider obtaining independent advice.
• Don’t be fooled by pressurized sales with limited timescales and promises of returns that are too good to be true.
• Use the FCA website www.fca.org.uk to search for the company you are buying cryptocurrency from and verify that it is a legitimate registered company, or a clone or fake. Then call them using the number on the FCA website when you set up a payment and every time you make a payment, even if you think you’re going to the same place.
• The FCA also has ScamSmart www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart, an online tool to help you identify if your investment is a scam or not. Answer four questions with multiple choice dropdowns and get a clear picture

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Sources: Santander Bank and file

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WARNING: This is an informative article. DiarioBitcoin is a means of communication, it does not promote, endorse or recommend any investment in particular. It is worth noting that investments in crypto assets are not regulated in some countries. May not be suitable for retail investors as the full amount invested could be lost. Check the laws of your country before investing.

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