Secure Usage of Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrencies
The value of Bitcoin is rising day by day again. This fact is used by the cybercrime industry. The online criminals often keep on targeting the new age Internet investors and traders to cause losses.
This article is intended to raise awareness about cyber-crimes having to do with the Bitcoin market so that all your transactions can be completed safely.
Rogue Bitcoin Wallets
For beginners or inexperienced investors, it is quite difficult to identify rogue Bitcoin wallets. The main purpose of wallets is to store BTC instead of trading. So, the frauds, in this case, do not happen instantly. Most of the time, the hackers install some kind of malware on the wallet and steal all the sensitive data.
In order to identify fraudulent wallets, investors are advised to check for suspicious hallmarks. Experts advise asking for recommendations before using any random service online. It is better to check online scores, ratings, and reviews.
In case you are downloading a Bitcoin wallet online, it is better to check it for the risky codes involved. You can use sites such like VirusTotal to scan the presence of viruses before downloading any infectious content on your gadget.
Fake Bitcoin exchanges
Many platforms keep on advertising low exchange rates when trading Bitcoins, but most of them are just trying to attract investors towards their fake websites. Whenever you visit any exchange service online make sure that it has HTTPS in its URL. Web addresses that begin with HTTPS indicate encrypted transactions online, and these platforms are quite secure to use.
Another common trend in the cybercrime industry is the frauds related to PayPal to BTC exchange. When you visit these websites, they ask you to enter your PayPal account details and the total amount of Bitcoins that you plan to transfer. As soon as you confirm the QR code for making transaction online and instead of transferring your Bitcoins, they simply steal your PayPal account details.
Another type of scam in the online world is phishing. When used in relation to Bitcoins, it attracts investors to visit some rogue websites that are presented as legitimate services. When people visit those platforms, their logins and passwords get compromised, and they may lose Bitcoins.
The malicious phishing messages may arrive on your device in the form of emails, and they appear to be originated from original wallet service or exchange you commonly use for Bitcoin-related transactions. The hackers usually get your personal details from data leaks like Yahoo hack.
Experts advise not to click on the hyperlinks found in these emails. Links may look genuine at first instance but can direct you to the hacker’s websites. Even if you want to check them, it is better to use Virus Total.
Also, it is not good to download unwanted email attachments as they may spread harmful viruses like ransomware described here.
Hackers can use black SEO or web ads to direct investors towards fraud Bitcoin wallets or exchanges by attracting them to some common keywords like “Bitcoin Exchange” or “Buy Bitcoin.” Some malicious websites may frequently appear on the top of the Google search results. In this case, again, prefer to use Virus Total to check whether it is safe or not.
Bitcoin Ponzi schemes
You may also find some websites that propose attractive BTC deals online. They may appear genuine, but this is not always true. Most of them claim a two-fold increase in your Bitcoin even within a day. They are better known as Ponzi schemes. Once you transfer your Bitcoin to these people, the chances are that you will avail no or very low returns.
Such websites come with various type of referral programs where members are attracted to earn more cash by generating new leads. Such referral links must be considered as warning signs for investment. They generally look like website.com/?ref=726252.
In-person trading thefts
Bitcoin thefts are not just limited to the online world. With the new set of rules and regulations in the cryptocurrency trading world, citizens often face troubles in selling and buying Bitcoins. These challenges are motivating investors to migrate to the offline world, and they mostly prefer face to face meetings for conducting any kind of exchanges.
Reports reveal that offline peer to peer Bitcoin transactions also involve risky transfers. One Indian entrepreneur was robbed when he tried to buy BTC at a low price. The investor fixed an appointment with the supposed BTC dealers at some shopping center where he was abducted and then robbed.
In order to avoid offline incidents, investors are advised not to meet unknown people privately to make any BTC exchange, especially when you are carrying a huge amount with you.
False promises with cloud mining
In cloud mining models, various individuals group together and rent a Bitcoin mining equipment by investing some amount. Usually, this idea is really beneficial and legit. But fraudsters keep on launching scams where they attract people to get equipment on low investment offers and later do not keep their promises.
In order to avoid such type of scams, it is important to observe the risk indicators. First of all, do not use services that are advertised with some kind of referral links. Check the website stays open and collect information about who operates it and how much income you can actually generate. A legitimate service provider usually has a well-designed dashboard to monitor and execute all operations.
As the Bitcoin industry is rising, the safety issues are also increasing day by day. In this scenario, if you wish to join the race of online investors, it is better to follow secure and safe trading platforms to make BTC based transactions online.
Photos courtesy of us.fotolia.com
Leave a Reply