One of the biggest advantages touted by cryptocurrency enthusiasts is that Bitcoin and its peers aren’t under the control of snooping authorities, with nobody able to trace what you’re doing with your money or to interfere.
But I keep reading of people who’ve lost money in crypto scams, and they often complain that the authorities aren’t helping chase up the crime to get their money back. Well, come on, they can’t have it both ways!
The scams keep on coming, with the case of the missing cryptoqueen in the news again this week. Ruja Ignatova was the glamorous face of the OneCoin cryptocurrency, appearing at Wembley Arena in 2016 to promote the new alternative to Bitcoin. This was when Bitcoin was just taking off and trading for hundreds of dollars, long before it reached its all-time high of $19,783 in December 2017, and others wanted in on the act.
As it turned out, OneCoin was fraudulent, punters lost their money, and Ignatova is nowhere to be found. And UK investors are still being conned into buying OneCoin today.
In Germany, another blockchain offering was shut by the authorities this month, after fraud allegations were raised. Karatbars, which also used glitzy launch events, is suspected of being a pyramid scheme. But with hundreds of millions of pounds claimed to have been invested, is it really possible to stop people trading it online and drawing in more dupes?
Back in the UK, some crypto managers and pundits are slamming the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and its crackdown on new start-ups, complaining that the FCA is asking a lot more questions and making it a lot harder for new schemes to get off the ground these days. Well yes, that’s the whole point.
With things like this going on, coupled with various thefts from Bitcoin exchanges, and even the existence of completely fake exchanges, what should Bitcoin investors do to keep their cryptogoodies safe?
I think asking that question is missing the point — it’s…