Business

Neil Mathew

SEC Investor alert warns against crypto scams

There are all sorts of cryptocurrency influencers and organizations that have been open about the fraud in the cryptocurrency sector, but it appears as though two of the most influential regulatory agencies are focused on ensuring that certain websites are called out concerning prospective crypto investors.

Specifically, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Office of Customer Education and Outreach are warning potential crypto investors about websites that might claim to be either “trading” or “advisory” websites.

The investor alert warns investors to avoid schemes that investing in mining or trading cryptocurrency. The fraudsters promised a high percentage in terms of returns with minimal risk. Specifically, the investor alert cautioned to look out for red flags, including “complicated jargon” that might be used to confuse potential victims and “pressure to buy right now,” where fraudsters create a false sense of urgency to ensure that some money is received.

The alert also urges investors to do due diligence for cryptocurrency investments, and to read all associated material and verify statements for themselves. It elaborates that investors should contact authorities, such as the states securities regulator, to ensure that the firms and individuals are legitimate. Also, the alert added that investors should use common sense and determine whether offers sound “too good to be true,” and should be especially wary of unsolicited offers.

Unsolicited offers include fraudsters that might use fake names and artificial e-mails. In many of these cases, potential investors have not even asked to communicate with the scammers at all.

The alert also mentioned that the United States Attorney’s Office of Oregon indicted two Nigerian citizens, Omwuemerie Ogor Gift, and Kelvin Usifoh, on counts of wire fraud and money laundering. The defendants were affiliated with multiple websites specifically designed to deceive investors, including wealthcurrency.com, boomcurrency.com, and merrycurrency.com.

The alert also urged investors that have been deceived to contact either the SEC or CFTC.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as SegWitCoin BTC coins. Altcoins, which value privacy, anonymity, and distance from government intervention, are referenced as dark coins.

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