Tech support fraud, boilerroom fraud and Forex broker fraud

In the article How do I identify a potential digital currency scam? we explain several kind of scams in detail. In this article, we describe in detail the specific boilerroom fraud (Forex broker fraud) and tech support fraud (Microsoft fraud)

Boilerroom fraud (Forex broker fraud)

With boilerroom fraud and Forex broker fraud you are usually being approached with an investment proposal (that is too good to be true) by phone or chat (like Whatsapp or Facebook Messenger) or you have found a website on the internet that promises you high returns by investing in Bitcoin. Ultimately, you always end up on a slick and professional looking website that promises very high returns. If you receive a call or chat message, this usually concerns someone who poses as an employee of a financial or investment institution.

You can recognize these type of websites by the various tiers / levels of investing. Starting at an entry level with a low amount and lower returns, progressing to higher amounts and higher returns.

This type of fraud usually involves the following steps:

  1. You have clicked an ad on the internet promising high returns when investing in Bitcoin or you are being approached by phone or text message by a person who makes you an investment proposal for Bitcoin.
  2. You will be redirected to a slick and professional looking website on which you must create an account and fill in your details. These websites usually look very professional, with live price charts and your personal balance increasing. However, this is all fake.
  3. You are being asked to start buying Bitcoins for a relatively small amount on an exchange such as Bitvavo. You must then send this to 'your' wallet on the investment platform. In your account you will often see that your balance is rising fast (this is all fake). This is the moment when you are being persuaded to invest more Bitcoin so that you can make even higher returns.
  4. You actually seem to make a return, but in reality this is all fake and the Bitcoin is not in your own wallet at all, but on a wallet from the scammer. If you would like to withdraw your Bitcoin, this is not possible because, for example, there are 'technical issues'.
  5. After you realize that you may have been scammed, you will often come across parties on the internet who indicate that they can help you get back your investment for a fee in Bitcoin. Do not buy into this. These often concern (the same) scammers.

What can you do if you think you are dealing with boilerroom fraud or broker fraud?

  • Hang up the phone or close the chat if you receive an unsolicited call or text message from someone trying to persuade you to invest in Bitcoin.
  • If you have found an investment website yourself, check whether the party is regulated and has the correct permits.
  • Perform an internet search for the investmentplatform and look for reviews.
  • Check the party's Bitcoin address on the internet (or ask the exchange on which you have bought the Bitcoins).
  • In case that you have used a password for the investment website that you have used before, change your other passwords as soon as possible.
  • Pass it on to family and friends.
  • Call your bank and report it to the police.

Tech support fraud (Microsoft fraud)

There are three common variations of this type of internet fraud:

  1. By a phone call from from a so-called tech support employee (i.e. from Microsoft) to inform you that there is a problem with your computer. Usually they indicate that you have been hacked, that you have a virus or an outdated license. The so-called tech support employee can solve the problems for you, for a fee in Bitcoin.
  2. By a pop-up on your phone or computer with the message that your computer has been infected with a virus or that your files have been blocked. To solve this you need to call a local phone number. When this number is being called, a person will tell you that the problems can be solved for a fee in Bitcoin.
  3. Via a fake tech support telephone number that you have found on the internet yourself (via a fake website of, for example, Microsoft). When this number is being called a person will tell you that the problems can be solved for a fee in Bitcoin.

What can you do if you think you are dealing with a fake tech support?

  • Hang up the phone if you receive an unsolicited call from a tech support employee.
  • Do not allow access to your computer.
  • Do not transfer Bitcoin to any wallet.
  • Disconnect the internet and turn off your computer.
  • Pass it on to family and friends.
  • Call your bank and report it to the police.


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