The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned consumers about scams involving cryptocurrency ATMs. “It’s a new way of saying crooks are asking people to pay in cryptocurrency,” the FTC described.
FTC warns about scams involving cryptocurrency ATMs
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Monday issued a scam alert involving cryptocurrency ATMs. A consumer notice issued by Cristina Miranda of the FTC’s Division of Consumer and Business Education states:
There’s a new way of saying scammers are asking people to pay in cryptocurrency.
“It involves an impostor, a QR code, and going to a store (directed by the scammer on the phone) to send them your money through a cryptocurrency ATM,” the notice detailed.
The FTC notes that scammers may call victims pretending to be from the government, law enforcement or local utility companies. They can also pretend to be a lover you met online, or someone called you to let you know you won the lottery. They will keep calling you until they get your money.
The FTC explained that the scammers will “instruct you to withdraw funds from your bank, investment or retirement account.”
Next, they will direct you to a store that has a cryptocurrency ATM to buy cryptocurrency. They will then send you a QR code with their address embedded in it.
“Once you buy cryptocurrency, they make you scan the code to transfer the money to them. But then your money is gone,” the FTC stressed.
The agency emphasizes:
No one from the government, law enforcement, utilities, or prize promoters will tell you to pay them in cryptocurrency.
“If someone does this, it’s a scam every time. Any unexpected tweet, text, email, phone call or social media message – especially from someone you don’t know – asks you to pay for something in advance, including Cryptocurrencies, are scams,” the FTC warned.
What do you think of scams involving cryptocurrency ATMs? Let us know in the comments section below.
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