Digital currency scammers pose as Polish watchdog to defraud investors

The Polish Financial Supervision Authority (KNF) issued a warning recently, urging the public to be cautious of the rising instances of digital currency fraud. Digital currency scammers in Poland have reportedly been impersonating the country’s financial services regulator to target their victims.

According to the warning, the scammers reach out to the targets through emails or phone calls. They pose as a legitimate investment fund, regulated by the KNF. To prove their legitimacy, they request the victim to send some digital currency to an address which they claim belongs to the KNF.

However, the digital currency address belongs to the scammers, the regulator revealed.

The KNF reminded the public that it does not regulate any digital currency company. Any company that claims to be KNF-licensed to offer digital currency services in the country is most likely fraudulent, the regulator warned.

Part of the warning stated, “We would like to remind you that the cryptocurrency market in Poland is not a regulated or supervised market. KNF does not license, supervise or exercise any other powers with regard to cryptocurrency trading activities.”

The regulator further warned the public to be cautious of giving their personal information to such scammers as it may be used in identity theft. Upon receiving such solicitation calls, the citizens should “try to collect as much detail as possible,” the regulator advised. This information could prove pivotal in arresting the scammers.

Despite the hard stance against digital currencies, the KNF has recently expressed interest in regulating the industry. In July, the regulator published a draft bill that lays out some proposed laws to govern the industry. It invited all the relevant stakeholders to give their feedback, a process that’s still ongoing.

Poland has been unfriendly towards the digital currency industry, leading some of the largest players to close shop and move their operations elsewhere. BitBay, once the largest exchange in Poland, moved its operations to Malta in 2018. It attributed the move to the non-cooperation by the local banks which made it almost impossible for users to access fiat products.

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