A UK resident, referred to as “Lisa” to maintain her anonymity, was deceived out of £40,000 in an online cryptocurrency scam. The scam has highlighted the growing concerns surrounding online cryptocurrency frauds.
Lisa was lured into the scam after seeing an advertisement on Facebook, which she believed was endorsed by the renowned Money Saving Expert, Martin Lewis. Over a span of two months, she was consistently contacted by the scammer, who manipulated her into believing they were “business partners”. The scammer’s tactics were so convincing that Lisa was led to believe she was investing in a legitimate venture backed by Martin Lewis.
However, a representative from Money Saving Expert clarified, “Martin never endorses advertisements or promotes investments. Any such claims are fraudulent.”
The scam took a severe turn when the fraudster opened an Experian account using Lisa’s details and fraudulently applied for 11 loans. Lisa was shocked to discover £55,000 in her account, which the scammer later demanded she transfer to him.
Janet Quinn, the scams lead officer for Heart of the South West Trading Standards office, commented on the rising trend of such scams, stating, “Cryptocurrency and investment scams are rampant currently, with many individuals seeking quick financial gains due to the ongoing cost of living crisis.”
Lisa is currently receiving support from various agencies, including the Citizens Advice Bureau, the Trading Standards Agency, and the police. She has negotiated with the loan companies and is repaying a minimal amount to safeguard her credit rating. Despite the support, the traumatic experience has left Lisa wary of unknown calls and fearful for her safety.
For information about how to protect your digital assets, check out our guide on how to keep crypto safe.
Reference: BBC News