Similar to real fishing, scammers will lure victims into taking their bait through phishing scams. This social engineering attack is becoming more advanced as time goes on, and scammers are trying everything they can to trick and steal from users. Since cryptocurrency is such a profitable industry, phishers are increasingly targeting traders and attempting to steal their crypto wallet keys or other account information.
What’s worse is that scammers are succeeding in profiting from crypto phishing scams! Over $1 billion has been stolen from crypto traders since 2021 and much of this is due to phishing attacks since users are unaware of what to look out for. Understanding the signs of a crypto phishing scam and learning how to avoid them is key to keeping your crypt assets safe!
What Is a Phishing Scam?
A phishing scam is a type of scam where scammers attempt to trick their victims into revealing sensitive information such as bank information, password, and crypto wallet keys. Scammers will do this by masquerading as a genuine company and sending out emails that urge recipients to either click a malicious link or hand over their account details. Usually, phishing emails will display a sense of urgency and tell users they need to open a link immediately to claim a prize or avoid a penalty in their account. Phishing attacks are widespread, and in recent years, scammers have been turning their attention to traders to steal cryptocurrency and other assets.
Key Signs of a Phishing Scam
Despite being so common in the cryptocurrency world, phishing scams can be easily identified and avoided if you know the key signs to look out for.
Spelling and Grammar Mistakes
Scammers often rush the process of creating phishing emails before they send them out to the masses. This means that the emails will often contain spelling and grammar mistakes despite claiming to be from a legitimate business. This can also be a result of a scammer using an online language translater or as an attempt to evade email spam filters. If you’re reading an email that’s sent to you and it contains lots of mistakes or clearly seems to be written by someone who is not adept in your language, then it’s best to mark it as a scam. You can also take a lot at some examples of phishing emails, so you know what exactly to look out for.
Public Email Addresses
In addition to checking for spelling and grammar errors, you should also take a look at the sender’s email address. Legitimate businesses will often use corporate email domains such as @businessname.com. However, creating an email address with a public domain is much easier, so scammers often use this option. So, you should be extremely sceptical if you receive a ‘professional’ looking email that has been sent by a public email domain. Additionally, legitimate businesses will often address you in their email as a way to personalise it (such as Dear ‘Your name’) whereas scammers don’t have that information so they will include a generic greeting such as ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ instead.
Phishing scammers may also choose a particular business to imitate when creating emails or even entire websites. This means that they will try to perfectly match their target’s content, font, logo, and colour scheme. If you have already familiarised yourself with genuine brands, then it can be easy to spot the fakes as long as you pay attention to detail. Also, if you’re on a website, always check the URL, as scammers will often try to match it to the website they are limiting but will switch some letters to make it unique. For example, Google.com may appear to be G00gle.com or Mircosoft.com as Mirc0s0ft.com.
How to Avoid Phishing Crypto Scams
After you’ve learnt what to look out for, the next step is learning how to protect yourself from phishing scams. First of all, you should never click on any links that have been sent to you through email, text, or instant message, no matter how genuine it seems. If a business is requesting that you complete an action on their website, instead of clicking on any links, you should type the website’s URL directly into your browser.
Additionally, you should never reveal your crypto wallet keys or other account information to anyone. If you’re being contacted by your bank or other financial company, you should head to the official website (by typing the URL in your browser), find their contact information, and verify the email you’ve been sent. If you believe you’re being contacted by a phisher but are still unsure, then you can try searching the sender’s email address or website URL in Google to see if there is any mention of it being a scam.
Finally, if you do receive any suspicious emails that you believe to be phishing scams, then we recommend that you report them to a website such as The National Cruber Security Centre as they will have the power to remove the scammer’s email address.
How to Invest in Crypto Safely
Despite scammers seemingly flooding the crypto space, investing in cryptocurrency can still be safe. If you’re looking for additional support when trading and want to help limit poor financial decisions, then why not sign up for a cryptocurrency platform? After signing up for a crypto platform, you’ll be connected to a broker that can help you reach your full trading potential. They will offer a wide array of tools and resources that can help set you on the right path as you start (or continue) your crypto journey.
Before signing up for a crypto platform, you need to decide what your trading goals are and have an idea of which cryptocurrencies you’re interested in trading. Immediate Edge is an excellent crypto platform that supports a wide range of cryptocurrencies and connects its users with professional brokers worldwide. After signing up for a crypto platform, you can put your mind at ease knowing that you’re getting relevant support that can help guide you to success!
Although phishing scams may seem alarming, as long as you take the proper precautions, you can avoid them. By learning the signs of phishing scams and understanding what to do to avoid them, you can prevent yourself from falling into a scammer’s trap and losing your crypto assets. Also, it’s incredibly important always to keep your guard up and pay attention to the content in any email that’s sent to you. If you’re suspicious for whatever reason, then it’s best to leave the website or delete the email rather than risk becoming a phisher’s next victim. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry!