FBI cautions US citizens over crypto apps

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has cautioned consumers that cryptocurrency criminals are launching bogus apps that gain access to investor funds.

These apps are proliferating in the virtual asset space and putting many inexperienced consumers at risk of becoming a victim.

The FBI has observed that numerous cryptocurrency criminals are targeting US citizens and convincing investors to download illegitimate apps designed to steal their users’ cryptocurrency funds.

According to the FBI, there have been at least 244 victims who have lost $42.7m between October 4, 2021 and May 13, 2022 to similar schemes.

The fraudsters often masquerade as a US financial firm, according to the FBI, urging consumers to exercise caution when dealing with companies that promise huge payouts and dividends.

“Financial institutions should warn their customers about this activity and inform customers as to whether they offer cryptocurrency services”, the FBI advised.

The FBI has already offered some common practices to ensure that people are protected. The agency told consumers to be wary of requests to download apps that have come from unknown parties or parties that have been too pushy.

The agency advises consumers to try and verify whether the app is legitimate and do basic due diligence, read opinions and news from reputed sources before making any specific decisions.

Overall, the FBI calls on investors to exercise skepticism in cases where things are “too good to be true”.

The FBI joins the Federal Trade Commission in warning US citizens about the increase in cryptocurrency schemes targeting people online.

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Updated: 07/20/2022 — 09:00