Another week, another bunch of crypto crimes. In what we hope will be a regular series of posts, we’ve rounded up the week’s biggest bits of crypto crime. First up? A Isle of Jersey victim who sent £1.2 million to scammers who pretended to offer him or her bitcoin.
The scammers – who authorities claim came from Norway – spent 18 months convicing the unnamed victim to give up their life savings for a “surefire” investment in crypto.
The scammers then disappeared.
“Following this Islander’s huge loss, we are warning local residents to be extra vigilant when investing in cryptocurrencies or any investment that seems too good to be true and promises high returns with no risk,” said Mike Jones, director of policy and risk at the Jersey Financial Services Commission. “Always get independent advice from a professional, and make sure the company you’re dealing with is legitimate.”
Jersey authorities are also waking up to traditional ransom scams in which victims are warned that video of their private moments will be released to friends and family if bitcoin isn’t sent to a certain address.
Backpage Bust Fingers Grifters
Screenshot from current BackPage site.
Next up we find a report on Decrypt that prostitution site Backpage used multiple exchanges to launder its cash. The site, which closed last year, moved hundreds of thousands of dollars through crypto exchanges.
“Backpage also furthered its money laundering efforts through the use of bitcoin processing companies. Over time, Backpage utilized companies such as Coinbase, GoCoin, Paxful, Kraken, and Crypto Capital to receive payments from customers and/or route money through the accounts of related companies .”
“According to court documents, the government seized several financial accounts belonging to Backpage owners, including a number of accounts held with Crypto Capital, as well as Global Trading Solutions—one of the many other names under which Crypto Capital…