Crypto scams: fake support of cryptocurrency projects

False support, or so-called “fake support”, is a scam that occurs mainly on social media and on discussion channels on Telegram or Discord. Scammers impersonate other projects to extort sensitive data from the user.

The world of cryptocurrencies has opened up new opportunities for investors, but it has also opened the door for fraudsters. One of the increasingly sophisticated types of fraud is the one that involves the false support of cryptocurrency projects (fake help desk, fake support). Criminals impersonate the official support channels of large projects to gain access to sensitive user data and extort their cryptocurrencies. People who are already operating in the cryptocurrency world are particularly vulnerable to this type of fraud. It is worth remembering that although the decentralized nature and complex structure of blockchain and cryptocurrencies make the technology itself safe, resistant to fraud and manipulation, its weakest link is the human being.

How does fake support work?

Scams related to the false support of cryptocurrency projects consist of impersonating official support channels, such as Telegram or Discord, and communication of projects such as wallets, exchanges or ICO platforms.

Users who encounter problems related to applications or cryptocurrency wallets often seek help on various platforms, including Telegram, Discord, or other social channels. Scammers set up fake profiles on these platforms that deceptively resemble official project support. They often use names similar to real designs, making them look authentic. They gather a fake community and try to convince the victims that they are the official support of the project.

They then ask for sensitive information, such as private keys, passwords, or other credentials. Real support will never ask for such data. The moment the victim provides their sensitive data, such as the Secret Key to the Metamask wallet or other sensitive information, the criminals gain full access to the account and can reset the cryptocurrencies.

How to protect yourself from scams with fake support?

To protect yourself from false support of cryptocurrency projects, it is worth following a few key precautionary rules. Always make sure you contact official project support by checking their official websites, social media accounts, and other authoritative sources. Never share private keys, passwords or other sensitive information on social media platforms or in email messages, even if someone claims to be an official support.

If in doubt, verify the support request on another official channel of the project in question, and if you identify fake support, warn other users so that they do not fall victim to the scam. Also inform the real project about the phishing attempt, block and report the fake profile as a scam.

What can I do if I have been deceived in this or that way?

If you have been affected by a similar situation, you can:

  • submit a notice of the possibility of committing a crime,
  • consult with a legal adviser or lawyer,
  • decide on further legal steps after consultation.

Legal commentary

The described actions may be considered crimes, including fraud as defined in Article 286 of the Criminal Code and unlawful obtaining of information from the ICT system as defined in Article 267 §3 of the Criminal Code.
In order for the proceedings to take place, it is necessary to file a notice of the possibility of committing a crime. The notice can be submitted in writing or orally to the protocol in the nearest unit of the Police or Prosecutor's Office. The crime of unlawful acquisition of information is prosecuted at the request of the injured party. Such a request may be submitted together with a notice, in writing or orally to the minutes. In the event of a conviction, the court may order, and at the request of the injured party, order the obligation to compensate (in whole or in part) the damage caused by the crime or to make reparation for the harm suffered. The application can be filed until the court wire is closed at the main hearing. Compensation or compensation may also be sought in civil proceedings. To do this, you need to file an action and file a corresponding lawsuit.

lawyer Rafał Lorent, counsel at 3DOTS Law

Scams with the false support of cryptocurrency projects are becoming more sophisticated, so it is important to be vigilant and cautious when seeking help in the cryptocurrency world. Keeping sensitive data to yourself and using official sources of help is the key to safely managing your cryptocurrencies.

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