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Author : Bitcoin.com
Phishing Scams. This is a very common scam. Phishing is when someone tries to trick you into thinking they are a trusted company or website by having you visit a fake site. Typically, phishers contact you via email or through a fake web advertisement. The end result is you go to their website by mistake and either get malware, or lose your bitcoin through a fake sale. With emails you have to be careful to not take the bait. You may receive an email from a wallet or exchange you already use, either by coincidence or through past database hacks. Maybe hackers obtained your email address on the black market; for example from a Yahoo! or other service hack. Best practice is to not click on any hyperlinks in an email or open attachments. Go directly to the website if you have to do business there. A common tactic is to make a hyperlink look real, but if you hover over it you will see the fake website URL. Always check the sender email to see where it’s coming from (although this is not 100% reliable as emails can be spoofed). With fake web advertisements, you have to be careful on the site you are visiting. This usually happens when searching on the web for things like “blockchain.” The top result could actually be an advert via Google for example, but may end up being a fake Bitcoin wallet. Best practice is to not visit sponsored ad content in search results, and just manually type the real website address directly into your browser.
To be sure you are going to a real Bitcoin wallet, visit our wallet portal on Bitcoin.com at https://www.bitcoin.com/choose-your-wallet?utm_source=get-started&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=guides&utm_content=How-Avoid-Fraud to ensure you aren’t being scammed. Ponzi Scams. Ponzi scams are promises from websites that you will “double your bitcoin” overnight, or some similar outlandish claim. Ponzi sites may be harder to spot, but they’re easy to figure out once you understand this: the only way to double your money is to first send it to them. Ponzi sites also typically have referral programs, so if you get others to sign up for the site by visiting your affiliate link, you may make a few cents. This is another red flag, as many times you will see on social media shared links with referrals within the URL. Usually it will look something like this (referral link is in bold): domain.com/ponzi/?ref=12345. If you’re unsure whether this Bitcoin site is a scam, visit our Scam thread on the Bitcoin Forum at https://forum.bitcoin.com/scam-accusations?utm_source=get-started&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=guides&utm_content=How-Avoid-Fraud to see if others have used it before. Cloud Mining. This can be a bit tricky because not all cloud mining operations are scams. Some are completely legitimate, however many are scams, so it’s best to warn people (especially newcomers) to be careful when looking into cloud mining.
For the uninformed, cloud mining is shared mining hashpower, where people pool their funds together to rent Bitcoin mining machines. For legitimate operations, this works and can be profitable. For scams, returns may be low or non-existent. As we’ve previously established, it’s best to trust your instincts and look for red flags. Does the site use HTTPS? Did you find the site from a referral link on social media? Does the cloud mining operation not give any insight into what pool they use to mine, or let you select the pool you want to direct your hashrate to? These are just a few things to look for; you can read some other tips here at https://forum.bitcoin.com/scam-accusations?utm_source=get-started&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=guides&utm_content=How-Avoid-Fraud. We recommend the Bitcoin.com Mining Pool, at https://pool.bitcoin.com/ which is a legitimate cloud mining pool that offers the highest block rewards in the space with 0% fees. The pool also has very competitive hashrate plans at https://pool.bitcoin.com/index_en.html#buyhashrate that you can buy. The pool is completely transparent on how it’s run, by whom, and how much return on your investment you will gain. Additionally on your account dashboard you will see charts and information with exact details on any mining contract you purchase. If you’re unsure about cloud mining, visit our Bitcoin Mining Forum at https://forum.bitcoin.com/mining/ and ask someone for help.
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