Entrepreneur with Master's Degree in Computer Science loses R$3.6 million in Bitcoin scam

That the world is getting more digital, everyone knows. Opportunities to make money from the internet, whether in cryptocurrencies or other services, always attract people, but what many do not realize is how, during these processes, it is easy to fall for scams.

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  • According to a survey by Serasa Experian, more than 2 million Brazilians suffered financial blows during the first half of 2021. Crimes such as the “False Payment Scam” are responsible for a large part of the frauds registered in Brazil, as well as the “Falsa Venda” scam. Another example is the “Bolpe do Boleto”, which, according to reports, had a huge growth in 350.

    In the world of cryptocurrencies, Brazilians have recently been following the case of the “Pharaoh of Bitcoins”, which over the last 5 years has moved more than R$ 2 billion from a ” Investment Coup” that promised profits of % per month for those who invested with him in Bitcoins.

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    The ease of falling into blows

    Those who think that only people without education or who do not know technology are liable to fall for scams are mistaken. British businessman Naveed Saghir, 40 years old, has a Masters in Computer Science, owns his own company and, even so, was deceived by online scammers, as a BBC report showed.

    Saghir was a victim of the “Investment Coup”, similar to the one applied by the “Pharaoh of Bitcoins” here in Brazil. This fraud occurs when criminals convince victims to “invest” in fake deals, with the promise of big financial returns. The money, however, is not invested, but used by the bandits.

    According to Saghir, he was watching videos online when, after seeing a commercial talking about equity investment opportunities, he became interested and sought out the advertiser. “I was watching videos on YouTube when I came across an ad offering the opportunity to invest in stocks and filled out a form requesting more information.The next day I got a call from someone who introduced themselves as a customer service agent and I paid $350 (R$ 1.8 thousand at the current price) to start investing”, he says, according to a BBC report published on UOL.

    Soon after, the businessman was given a username and password for a well-constructed business website, which he said did not arouse suspicion. “The next day they called me again, this time it was someone who described themselves as my account manager and gave me a username and password for an extremely attractive business website.”

    After this initial period, the British entrepreneur spent from May until August depositing amounts in the supposed firm, believing in the legitimacy of the investment. When he noticed that he was losing money, the criminals convinced him that the entire amount invested would return at a profit.

    At the end of August, Saghir delivered US$ 25 thousand (about R$ thousand) and 25,25 Bitcoins, which, in reais, is worth approximately R$3.6 million, at the current cryptocurrency quotation. A few weeks after this deposit, he realized he was being cheated.

    Saghir, after losing so much money, still finds himself in disbelief at what he experienced. “I still can’t remember how they managed to deceive me. I don’t know”, he concludes, still for the BBC report.

    How to avoid falling into scams 2021

    The story of Naveed Saghit shows how easy it is to fall for blows. Even if you are an informed person, criminals are often able to convince that the supposed proposal is a good deal, either by offering extravagant profits or simply by a good argument, using real data from other investments to give credibility to the crime.

    However, there are some tips that, when used, reduce the risk of people being victims of this type of scam. Check them out below:

    • Be wary of extravagant profits;
    • Do not invest with strangers;
    • If you are going to invest, invest little money;
    • Check the institution’s history you want to invest;
    • Seek advice from professionals in the area.

    Source: BBC via UOL

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    2021 2021

    2021

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