Canada has joined India in issuing warnings about Bitcoin-related Ponzi schemes targeting vulnerable consumers.
A report by police in Ontario released Friday states that “fraudsters send cheques to the victims and ask them to use the money to purchase Bitcoins” using local Bitcoin ATMs.
The report explains:
“The victims deposit the cheque (or sometimes e-transfer) into their accounts then use the funds to buy online currency and deposit the Bitcoins into someone else's account. For doing this, they are told they can keep a certain amount of the money that was originally sent to them. However, a short time after the victim uses their own money to purchase the Bitcoins, the original cheque or e-transfer bounces.”
Ontario’s urban areas have a higher than average number of Bitcoin ATMs, especially in the capital Toronto.
Nevertheless, the repeat reports highlight a lack of education about the emerging technology common around the world.
Last week, Cointelegraph reported on India’s cryptocurrency startups advising that fraudsters were also targeting consumers en masse, using Bitcoin as a means of illicit financial benefit.
“The issue of multi-level marketing schemes is a global problem; however, these are now gaining traction in India owing to a lack of governing guidelines and the rapid rise in the value of [...] crypto-currency,” a report quotes local industry body Blockchain Foundation of India.