Cryptocurrency Trading Scam
This page describes a cryptocurrency trading scam. The webpage displayed below is typical of several similar articles produced by scammers who are promoting a program called Bitcoin Aussie System. There are many cryptocurrencies and the exchange rate between them varies so the scheme allegedly uses a sophisticated algorithm to trade between the currencies and make a profit. By re-investing the profits of each trade you build up capital. Over time you may be so successful that it seems a guaranteed way to make an income, so taking out a loan will enable you to invest more and magnify your gains. Perhaps you could draw down equity on your home loan so that you could build up enough through trading that you could pay off the home and be debt free. At some point along this road something will change and your loss will be significant. Perhaps you will lose everything. Or if you want to withdraw from the scheme - quit while you're ahead - you will not be able to do so, or there will be some kind of penalty. There will be no recourse, and no-one to blame except yourself. In reality it is probably a ponzi scheme. The local sales people just want you to invest more and more and, like gambling, if you seem to be winning you get drawn in.
Don't be fooled - it is a scam.
On the sidebar is a disclaimer, followed by contacts for Australian government agencies which you may not have heard of, and some other comments.
The remainder of the original page is filled with 'Testimonials'.
The people and organisations quoted in this article or portrayed in images or logos within this article are not likely to have given consent for their image to be used or allow comments attributed to them.
Similar pages with almost identical wording are also part of the scam, but may include different images and attribute similar statements to different celebrities.
By using celebrity images or names of respected persons including financial gurus the authors of these pages imply support for the scheme but it is a scam.
The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (Austrac) is an Australian Government agency which has a regulatory role under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 and uses Intelligence to 'follow the money' - the financial trail that helps law enforcement prosecute those involved in money laundering, terrorism financing, organised crime, and more.
Since 2018, digital currency exchange (DCE) providers operating in Australia are regulated by AUSTRAC. This means that cryptocurrency exchanges, including bitcoin, must be registered.
Austrac website: https://www.austrac.gov.au/
Scamwatch is part of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
Scamwatch provides information about different types of scams, how to get help, and how to report a scam.
Scamwatch website: https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/
"Cryptocurrency investment scams have seen record losses, with reports to the ACCC alone of $14.76 million between January and July 2019. Many use social media platforms, fake celebrity endorsements or fake online trading platforms that are made to look legitimate." Read more here: www.scamwatch.gov.au/news/record-losses-expected-as-scammers-target-australians
Only 37 spots remaining...
Did you notice that this is a 'limited opportunity' and there are only 37 places left?
There were just as few spots available a few months ago on a similar page. It is a ruse to lead you to think that you had better act quickly. Instead, take the time to do a proper evaluation!
Another point easily missed is the call to act 'before the banks shut it down'. This sense of urgency to act while you still can is false and spurious. In reality, some major banks have blocked transfers to cryptocurrency exchanges to protect their customers and prevent a customer from becoming a victim of fraud.
The URL for the scammers' website may be recognised by quality anti-virus and internet security suites for what it is - a Dangerous Page. To be specific, Trend Micro Maximum Security identified the threat as Phishing, and stated that "Trend Micro has confirmed that this website can transmit malicious software, may put your network and devices at risk, or has been involved in illegal acts, online scams, or fraud."
So, it is worth having a quality security suite on your own computer, and of course parents or elderly friends who are vulnerable to these kind of scams would benefit from the added protection when online.
Source of images
It would be interesting to know where all the images were sourced from. Perhaps they were stolen from social media pages. If you see yourself or someone you know in a photo used without permission contact Scamwatch for advice.
The website for this scam page is referred from one domain name to another. The parent domain is registered at an address in Jacksonville, Florida. When a browser is pointed to that domain name a referral occurs instantly to another domain which is registered in Panama. The URL shown in a browser when this process occurs may include &referrer. The Panama site looks like a news site, creating the illusion of legitimacy and authenticity. It is a sophisticated set-up designed to entice or trap impulsive or unwary people.