People who own Bitcoin need to be careful about bragging or talking publicly about owning Bitcoin in public forums. This is because they can easily become a target for scammers and fraudsters, as reported by a Google executive, who is in charge of fighting email abuses and frauds. While speaking to CNBC, Google executive Mark Risher, pointed out that attacks against owners of Cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin in wallets have risen significantly. He also noted that when one boasts about Bitcoin in public forums, there is a high risk of being followed by scammers, especially on their email accounts.
How Attackers Steal Cryptocurrencies
According to Risher, scammers will first track the social media accounts of the persons they want to steal from, before targeting them as victims. “They could be using a low valued person to pivot towards one who has a high-value target, such as someone who is in politics. They might also have seen someone discussing Bitcoin in a public forum”. As an overseer of Google’s email frauds and protection of properties against attacks, Risher noted that attackers would open wallets of their victims using reset links. This would be found in the emails of the victims when the Cryptocurrency wallets allow them to reset their passwords via email.
Nigerian Prince Scam
Over a decade ago, there was a scam that was commonly known as the ‘Nigerian prince scam’. In a statement, Risher said that it is not fair at all to associate with criminals today. The personal emails meant to be received from friends or family would often give way to attackers. “The generic, ‘Dear sir/madam, I am contacting you to request for a favor’, is basically a message from attackers, which most likely would target information. These attackers usually do serious research on their victims to get to such a point. As a victim, you will, therefore, get ‘social truth’ in your message content”. He said. “As the amount of data that we share increases, the information shared will, still remain all over on social media.” However, according to Risher, such scams can be easily minimized if the email addresses, as well as other social accounts, are noted. Limiting the amount of information sharing regarding Cryptocurrencies can also highly contribute to minimizing scams.
Ways of Preventing Fraud
Most attackers, will generally want to mine as much information as they can, which would, in turn, enable them to easily gain access to their victims. They will also send polite emails requesting favors, and at the same time posing as companies, so that they may sound as genuine as possible. The most basic way to prevent fraud is by avoiding such emails. We also ought to try our best and minimize information sharing as much as possible. Sharing of personal information in public forums should also be avoided at all cost, as it acts as an entry point to scammers.