Over the past four months, the National Cyber Security Centre, or NCSC, removed over 300,000 URLs pertaining to fake celebrity-endorsed investment opportunities. More than a half of these sites belonged to fraudulent cryptocurrency investment schemes.

Per an announcement published by the NCSC on August 14, an increasing number of these scams utilized fake endorsements from national celebrities, such as Ed Sheeran and Richard Branson. This raised red flags for authorities, prompting the launch of a massive retaliatory campaign.

Ciaran Martin, CEO of the NCSC, commented:

“These investment scams are a striking example of the kind of methods cyber criminals are now deploying to try to con people. We are exposing them today not only to raise public awareness but to show the criminals behind them that we know what they’re up to and are taking action to stop it.”

In Australia, a similar warning was issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, or ASIC. They too asked people to remain cautious about celebrity-endorsed Bitcoin (BTC) scam sites.

Cointelegraph recently reported that the United Kingdom Advertising Standards Authority, or ASA, and the Internet Advertising Bureau, or IAB, have launched a new system to help detect and remove fraudulent online ads.