NatWest has issued a warning to people who should beware of fraud with cryptocurrencies.
The bank said it prevented millions of pounds from being sent to “crypto criminals.”
The scams are usually criminals who advertise online with a fake celebrity advertisement on a fake website with an article promoting the cryptocurrency.
Investors are asked to fill out a contact form and the criminal uses this information to make a phone call.
During the call, the scammer posing as a cryptocurrency trader helps the victim open a wallet with a cryptocurrency trading platform and persuades the victim to install RAS software on their computer.
Initially, the victim transfers a small amount of money to the wallet, but over time they are persuaded to invest much larger amounts. The remote access software is then used to empty the victim’s cryptocurrency wallet.
NatWest offers customers free software for additional online protection, and recently introduced an online manage my limits feature that allows customers to limit the amount of money that can be transferred from their account.
Jason Costain, Head of Fraud Prevention at NatWest, said: “We have prevented millions of pounds from being sent to crypto criminals who take advantage of the high interest in the currency. However, consumers should always be vigilant, especially when using fake websites and fake celebrities. “
Here are NatWest’s tips to avoid cryptocurrency scams:
- If you have been contacted by a “trader” who promises big profits and offers you to invest in cryptocurrency, it is likely a scam.
- Always be in control of your cryptocurrency wallet. If you didn’t set up the wallet yourself, or if a cryptocurrency trader persuaded you to download remote access software to your computer, it could be a sign of fraud. You should stop paying immediately.
- Follow the directions given by the FCA and check that the cryptocurrency company you are dealing with has been approved by them.