A Connecticut State Police task force has recovered $23,000 for a person in Milford who was the victim of a cryptocurrency scam.
Police say that person was scammed into making several deposits into several Bitcoin ATMs under false pretenses.
Tracing funds to cryptocurrency exchanges in the United States and the Cayman Islands, the Connecticut State Police Statewide Organized Crime Investigative Task Force was able to recover the money. The funds, though, are only a portion of what was lost.
The Milford resident was initially defrauded of $41,000 through a complicated process conducted by the crypto scammers.
“They tried to hide it in the web,” said Trooper First Class Pedro Muniz.
According to police, these types of scams are on the rise and are becoming increasingly more sophisticated.
“It’s becoming more common with cryptocurrency being on the rise and being this new trend,” Muniz said.
With that, the Attorney General’s Office urges caution when contacted by a stranger about cryptocurrency. They say legitimate cryptocurrency platforms do not contact people they don’t have a business relationship with.
If you suspect fraud, they advise immediately contacting the financial institution you used to transfer funds.
NBC Connecticut spoke with a victim of a different but similar cryptocurrency scam. She wishes to stay anonymous but agreed to share her story.
She says she was targeted after making a post on a Facebook real estate group while looking for a part-time job. After posting on the site, a person reached out to her persuading her to invest in Bitcoin.
“I just thought it sounded really appealing, with the money that you can earn with bitcoin mining and so I started investing some money,” she said.
She was promised returns, but she never saw any. Distraught, she contacted the Securities Exchange Commission only to find out the company that contacted her did not exist.
She’s been helpless to recover her money and has advice for others.
“Do as much due diligence as you can, because by the time I started realizing to do more due diligence, it was too late,” she said.
State police agree and suggest anyone who suspects fraud to keep their guard up.
“We want people to just be wise, be smart, and just say no and hang up the phone,” Muniz said.
If you think you are a victim, police say to first call your local authorities, or you can email them by clicking here.