HURON EAST – A Huron East resident recently lost $17,500 in an online cryptocurrency scam.
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A Huron East resident reported losing the money in an internet investment scam in late August, police said. The victim told the Huron County OPP they were referred to a cryptocurrency investment website by a friend. The victim initially invested $7,500 and was promised certain profits on the investment. The victim then invested an additional $10,000.
Police said the fraudsters eventually “froze” the investment and ceased all communication with the victim, who then notified police.
The OPP offered advice on how to protect yourself from scams:
- Don’t give out personal information;
- Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know;
- Don’t invest your money in platforms provided by people you don’t know;
- Be careful who you share images with. Suspects will often use explicit pictures to extort victims into sending more money;
- Protect your online accounts;
- Get more than one quote for home repair work and never feel pressured;
- Never send money to someone you haven’t met; and
- Don’t respond to text messages from phone numbers you don’t recognize.
In 2022, according to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, fraud reports totalled $530 million in victim losses, a nearly 40 per cent increase over 2021. Police said it’s estimated that only five to 10 per cent of victims report scams and frauds to the centre or law enforcement.
If you fall victim to a fraud or know someone who has, contact your local police service to report the crime and report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or online on the fraud reporting system, even if a financial loss did not occur.