Bitcoin Scams

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Introduction to Bitcoin Scams

Bitcoin is a new digital currency with no central authority or bank controlling its issuance or transactions. As such, it has attracted many criminal activities like phishing, hacking and scamming. To protect yourself from these threats, it is important to remain alert and aware of your surroundings at all times. Whenever you come across any suspicious activity regarding digital currencies, be it an advertisement on social media asking you to send money to someone via a specific bitcoin address or messages asking you to share your login details of exchange wallets, be wary and check with your friends first. Don’t venture into anything without verifying the source first. Also verify if the people who are approaching you are genuine or not by asking them for personal information like their full name, contact number and address just in case they are pretending to be someone else or trying to scam you. Even if they insist that they are telling the truth, don’t give out any personal information unless you trust them completely. Here we list down some common scams associated with Bitcoin that you may come across while using the digital currency:

Fake exchange website

If someone offers you a place to exchange cash for bitcoins or offers a way to buy bitcoins with a credit card, there is a high probability that they are running a scam. Bitcoin exchangers don’t offer an easy way to buy bitcoins; they allow you to buy bitcoins with cash, but you don’t own the bitcoins after the transaction is complete. Instead, the exchanger takes the cash and gives you an invoice or bank account statement showing the transaction as completed. There are plenty of legitimate exchanges out there that enable you to buy bitcoins with a credit card. For example, popular exchanges such as Coinbase, Bitfinex, Kraken, Localbitcoins, OTC desks and so on.

fake wallet login page

This is a common trick used to steal your login details of the exchange wallets of bitcoin you hold on a specific website. These websites are known to be hacked by cybercriminals and are responsible for stealing the login details of many users. The most probable reason for a website to be hacked is that the website developer is careless with the security of the website. Once someone hackers the website, they can easily use the login details of the website owner to access the website. First, login to your exchange wallet account on any of the available platforms and withdraw the maximum amount of bitcoins that you can afford to lose. Now, keep the remaining bitcoins in your account and transfer them over to the hacked website. This way, you make it harder for the cybercriminals to get the login details of your remaining bitcoins.

fake payment message

This is a trick used by phishers to get your attention by misdirecting you to an email that looks similar to the exchange’s payment message. These messages are usually created by the hacker and sent to the email address of the person who has sent you bitcoins. Once you receive this email, you are asked to send the bitcoins to the hacker. If you receive such an email and want to report it to your exchange, do it as soon as possible. Your exchange will help you to report the incident and find out who the hacker is.

Fake service for unlocking bitcoins

This is also a common trick used to steal your bitcoins. Phishers use fake mails and websites to lure you in by offering a service to unfreeze your frozen bitcoins. You are asked to send the amount mentioned in the email or website that you visit to unlock your wallet. This is all a big scam. The exchange and payment service that you are trying to unlock is fake.


Bitcoin has brought in a new dimension to the digital currency world by enabling the users to operate their transactions without the need for a third party like a bank or financial institution. While the concept of using a decentralized digital currency seems like a promising one, it also comes with its own set of security concerns. In this article, we discussed several such Bitcoin scams that you should be wary of. Remember, the best defense against Bitcoin scams is to stay vigilant, verify the source and don’t venture into anything that seems a bit suspicious.