DELAWARE (PRESS RELEASE) – The Delaware State Police are providing a scam advisory surrounding the fraudulent use of cryptocurrency.
The Delaware State Police are warning the public of an increase in scams involving the use of cryptocurrency (or “crypto”) ATM machines and quick response (or “QR”) codes. The Delaware State Police have recently seen an increase in scams where the victim is directed to local crypto ATMs and/or stores that authorize QR crypto payments. Criminal perpetrators will leverage victims to send money in these forms during schemes that include government impersonation (DEA, ATF, Sheriff’s office, police agencies), computer spyware (computer takeovers, fraudulent security alerts), and romance scams (creating a false sense of intimacy). Scammers may maintain lengthy contact with the victim through online or telephone communication methods.
Given the nature of cryptocurrency, the successful recovery of lost funds can be extremely challenging. Unlike traditional wire or bank transfers, crypto transfers are instantaneous, and once the suspect receives the funds they are typically moved immediately to other accounts that are often based outside of the country.
Follow these tips to prevent yourself from falling victim to such scams:
- Never send crypto payment to someone you have never met.
- Remember that no legitimate business or agency will ever request a crypto payment.
- Do not engage unknown callers who claim that you are in trouble or threaten you or a family member with arrest, exposure, or embarrassment if a crypto payment is not made immediately.