Tue. May 24th, 2022

The victims received dividends for a period, but their accounts were also emptied.

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Just weeks after Saanich police reported that cryptocurrency fraud had cost local victims $ 1.4 million, the Comox Valley RCMP says they are investigating similar scams with reported losses of more than $ 1 million.

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Cryptocurrency is a term for digital currencies such as bitcoin.

In two Comox Valley cases, the victims were called up and presented with an opportunity to invest money in return for dividends. The victims gave the scammers access to their personal computers to set up trading accounts on a particular platform, but the scammers also used the access to collect personal information.

The victims received dividends for a period, but their accounts were also emptied.

Other victims who wanted to invest in cryptocurrency clicked on Facebook ads for cryptocurrency brokers and then transferred money to the brokers and were shown online reports indicating that their investments were going well. The brokers then urged the victims to invest more money before interrupting the communication.

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After that, the victims could not access their money.

“Once you have taken your money from the bank and transferred it somewhere else, you are responsible for where they go and who can access them,” Const said. Monika Terragni, who urged people to take the time to know where their money is going. “Do not be lured in by smart websites, online ads or unexpected phone calls.”

Saanich police said such cases can be difficult to investigate as they tend to involve multiple layers of fraud and often involve scammers based abroad. In addition, the methods of scammers continue to evolve.

Comox Valley RCMP offered these tips to protect yourself from this type of scam:

• Be wary of ads on the web and social media and be suspicious if you are contacted out of the blue about an investment.

• Do your research and note that scammers will often try to rush you into a decision. Make sure you are using legal services.

• Never allow anyone to remotely access your computer to create accounts.

• Remember that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

• More information is available on the RCMP Cyber ​​Security Web site at rcmp-grc.gc.ca/en/cyber-safety.

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