If you haven’t recently received a crappy email from an alien prince offering untold luck, it may be because online scammers have found a new and surprisingly lucrative platform to exploit.
Fraudsters are now using professional networking websites linkedin To woo uncertain investors. Some have lost more than a million dollars.
The fraud is focused on cryptocurrency, with scammers sending messages to LinkedIn users and encouraging them to invest in known cryptocurrency exchanges such as CryptoKitties. Eventually, through persuasion, scammers convince their target to transfer their investments to other alleged platforms that the scammers control. The investment is never returned.
One woman reported losing her entire life savings – about $288,000 – to a man she thought was helping her profit from the nascent cryptocurrency boom. “Once I realized I had been cheated on, I tried to contact him, but he was nowhere to be found,” she told CNBC,
The FBI called this type of scam a “significant threat.” In an interview with CNBC, FBI Special Agent in charge of the San Francisco and Sacramento field offices, Sean Ragan, said there has been an increase in this fraudulent activity on the platform recently.
LinkedIn has acknowledged this problem. “Over the past few months, we’ve seen an increase in fraudulent activity across the Internet, including on LinkedIn,” Oscar Rodriguez, the company’s senior director of trust, privacy and equity, wrote recently. blog post, He noted that the company uses artificial intelligence to quickly identify fraudulent behavior and accounts, and that “96% of fake accounts and 99.1% of spam and scams are caught and removed by our automated defense.”
In the post, Rodriguez has advised users to be careful. report good Suspicious activity, including:
- People are asking you for money that you don’t know personally. This could include people asking you to send them money, cryptocurrency, or gift cards to receive loans, rewards, or other winnings.
- Job postings that seem too good to be true or that ask you to pay something upfront. These opportunities may include mystery shopper, company impersonator, or personal assistant positions.
- Romantic messages or gestures that are not appropriate on our platform, and may be indicative of a possible fraudulent attempt. This may include people using fake accounts to develop a personal relationship with the intention of encouraging financial solicitations.
The 0.9% spam and scams that are still happening have devastated some users. While networking with people on LinkedIn and investing in known cryptocurrency exchanges may sound legitimate, this is the latest version of those suspicious emails from foreign dignitaries.