$2.6M in cryptocurrency fraud reported in Richmond – BC News

Crypto scams on the rise

Valerie Leung / Richmond News – | Story: 365916

Richmond RCMP are warning the public to be vigilant when it comes to cryptocurrency scams.

Twenty-two reports of cryptocurrency frauds with an approximate amount of $2.6 million have been reported to Richmond RCMP this year.

The reports highlight three trends, which involve fake investment schemes, romance scams, or individuals pretending to be government agency representatives.

Cpl. Melissa Liu, with the Richmond RCMP Economic Crime Unit, said one investigation involved a victim who was reportedly defrauded $550,000.

“In this case, the victim made a series of investments in what he believed were legitimate foreign exchange companies only to discover he’d been tricked,” said Liu.

“These fraudsters know exactly what they are doing and once they have the money it’s easy to move it so it cannot be traced or recovered.”

Fraudsters are known to be “extremely convincing” and use multiple tactics to trick people such as charming or threatening them.

Richmond RCMP launched a campaign in March 2020 for local businesses to display a sign near bitcoin machines, gift card carousels or tills to warn the public of these scams.

While the program was voluntary, said the Richmond RCMP, it was welcomed by various businesses in the city.

“Unfortunately, these fraudsters keep finding new and unsuspecting victims,” said Liu.

“We want to keep your money out of these fraudsters’ hands, which is why we will continue to remind and work hard to educate the public about cryptocurrency frauds.”