By Michael B. Cohen
Vice President of Global Operations
Cryptocurrencies have been gaining popularity in Canada in recent years, with more and more people investing in digital assets such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin and others. However, not all crypto enthusiasts are aware of the risks and challenges that come with this new form of money. According to a recent survey by the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC), one in three Canadian HODLers (a term for crypto investors who hold on to their coins regardless of price fluctuations) have lost money in crypto scams in the past year.
The CAFC survey, which was conducted online between May and June 2023, involved 2,000 Canadian HODLers who had invested at least $100 in cryptocurrencies. The survey found that 33% of the respondents had fallen victim to some form of crypto fraud, such as phishing, fake exchanges, Ponzi schemes, ransomware, or impersonation of celebrities or authorities. The average amount lost per victim was $3,500, with some losing as much as $50,000.
The survey also revealed some of the common factors that made HODLers vulnerable to crypto scams. For instance, 42% of the victims said they had invested in cryptocurrencies based on recommendations from friends, family or social media influencers, without doing their own research or verifying the sources. Another 38% said they had used unregulated or unknown platforms or wallets to buy or store their crypto assets, exposing them to hackers or fraudsters. Moreover, 36% said they had ignored or dismissed the warning signs of a scam, such as unrealistic promises of high returns, pressure to act quickly, or requests for personal or financial information.
The CAFC survey highlights the need for more education and awareness among Canadian HODLers about the potential pitfalls and dangers of investing in cryptocurrencies. The CAFC advises HODLers to follow some basic tips to protect themselves from crypto scams:
- Do your own research before investing in any cryptocurrency or platform. Check the reputation and legitimacy of the source, and read the terms and conditions carefully.
- Use only regulated and reputable platforms or wallets to buy or store your crypto assets. Avoid using public Wi-Fi or devices to access your crypto accounts.
- Be wary of unsolicited offers or requests related to cryptocurrencies. Do not click on links or attachments in emails or messages that claim to be from crypto companies or authorities. Do not share your personal or financial information with anyone you do not know or trust.
- Be skeptical of claims that sound too good to be true. If someone promises you guaranteed or high returns on your crypto investment, it is likely a scam. Remember that cryptocurrencies are volatile and risky, and there is no such thing as a free lunch.
- Report any suspicious or fraudulent activity to the CAFC at 1-888-495-8501 or online at www.antifraudcentre.ca You can also contact your local police or financial institution if you suspect you have been scammed
Cryptocurrencies can offer many benefits and opportunities for Canadians who want to diversify their portfolios and participate in the digital economy. However, they also come with significant risks and challenges that require caution and diligence. By being informed and vigilant, Canadian HODLers can avoid becoming victims of crypto scams and enjoy their crypto journey safely and securely.
Are you a Canadian HODLer who lost money in crypto scams? You are not alone! According to a recent study by TMU, 35% of Canadians who own digital assets have been scammed by fraudsters. Don’t let them get away with it! Contact MyChargeBack today and get your money back. We are experts in recovering funds from crypto scams and we have helped thousands of clients worldwide. Don’t wait, act now and reclaim what’s yours!