How scammers lure Discord users to a fake cryptocurrency exchange | Kaspersky official blog
discord was originally created for gamers, but thanks to its handy system of “servers” (communities), channels, and private messages, it attracts all kinds of people, from study groups to common interest clubs, including fans of cryptocurrency on their servers, traders discuss the latest altcoins, investors share predictions, and scammers ponder how to profit from both. we unpack the latest schematic and explain how not to fall for it.
be careful with gift exchanges
Scammers search for victims on discord crypto servers and send private messages that appear to come from an up-and-coming trading platform that gives away cryptocurrencies. The reasons for such alleged generosity vary from message to message, but whether the exchange is supporting merchants through tough times or trying to attract new users, the goal is always the same: the lucky recipient has been randomly chosen to receive an impressive payment in bitcoin or ethereum.
Reading: Discord bitcoin scams
The emoji-packed message contains detailed instructions (and a code) for accepting the gift, as well as a link to sign up for the cryptocurrency exchange.
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the link opens a site that looks like a cryptocurrency exchange, with responsive design, smart design, and the exchange rate information, charts, order books, and trading history that cryptocurrency traders would expect to see on a trading platform . visitors will also find technical support and various language options. clearly someone went to a lot of trouble to make the site look legit.
The attention to detail even extends to offering victims two-factor authentication to protect their accounts, as well as anti-phishing protection. here, of course, the purpose is purely to add plausibility; the real purpose of the site is to transfer money from the victim to the criminal.
To finish registration, the victim must either make a small cryptocurrency deposit (now or later) or go through a know-your-customer (KYC) identity check. the procedure is like one you might find on a legitimate exchange, requiring contact details, a photo of an identity document and a selfie taken with an ID, and a piece of paper with the exchange’s address, registration date, and signature .
fraudsters appear to be compiling a database to sell; Many legitimate services, including financial ones, use these sets of personal data to confirm user identities, which is why they fetch a good price on the dark web. Also supporting our conjecture is the scammers’ insistence that photo IDs should not be marked in any way.
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After registration, it’s time to activate that discord message reward key and get paid. For victims who are still playing, the code is accepted by the system and the promised bitcoin or ethereum coins appear in their account. however, when the victim tries to move the coins from the exchange to her own wallet, she only encounters obstacles.
fraudsters claim they need a recharge; in our case, 0.02 btc or an equivalent amount in ethereum or US dollars. (Any money sent to the scammers is lost forever, of course, and the prize was never real.)
The internet is home to several fake cryptocurrency exchanges, and forums and review sites already list warnings about them.
how to protect yourself against scammers
here are some simple rules:
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- never trust strangers, especially those offering free money;
- never share personal information with websites you don’t trust 100%;
- be take special care with documents and never send photos of them to anyone;
- configure your discord privacy settings to avoid such offers;
- use a reliable security solution. For example, Kaspersky Internet Security not only warns users about fraudulent and phishing sites, but also protects their computers from malware.