A Belgian economic observer reported that fraudsters stole up to $ 12 million from an investor in the country using fake ads.
In the October 5 alert from the Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA), the supervisory authority estimates that investors in Belgium have lost at least 10 million euros – about $ 11.8 million at the time of writing – between May 2019 and September 2020 from – to fake platforms. , Including those who work with cryptocurrencies. The FSMA reported that such platforms deceived victims by using fake social media ads displaying photos of celebrities and ordering them to provide information to attackers.
“These platforms often use very aggressive tactics to convince you to invest more,” said one financial observer. “They will also try to convince you to allow them to control your computer remotely in order to make certain payments.”
For investors in Belgium, fraudsters include ways to contact people over the phone after convincing them to provide contact information and offer to manage their assets. Fraudsters pin up “promises of high or even guaranteed profit”.
While the FSMA estimate also includes fake platforms offering investments in binary options, forex and CFD products, this may indicate an increase in cryptocurrency scams across Belgium.
In May, Cointelegraph reported that the Belgian Economic Service reported losses of $ 3.2 million due to cryptocurrency fraud in 2019. The country’s federal government service reported $ 2.5 million in losses from cryptocurrency scams the previous year.
The Belgian authorities have taken preventive measures to address the problem. In February, the FSMA blacklisted more than 140 cryptocurrency-related websites. However, FPS estimates that investors in Belgium typically lose around $ 152 million in such scams every year, with most incidents not reported.