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According to a report by Pittsburgh CBS, the FBI reports nearly 24,000 Americans were involved in scams on accident, the result was nearly $1 Billion dollars in losses (CBS, 2022). Some gas stations offer a system where you can insert cash/debit card and buy crypto right from the system and deposit it into your “wallet”. A very well known wallet used by many crypto users including myself is Coinbase. From this wallet you are able to then send it to anyone in the world by a QR code or a link. It is extremely secure and fast. Much like the video, this works by a block chain system, keeping track of where your money goes and come. A scam could easily happen by sending the money to the wrong QR code or link thinking it was for something that was a “scam”. However, much like venmo, it carries some of the same risks, do not pay the person unless you know them and know it is not a scam.
The interesting thing about crypto is that the actual value varies every second, if you send me one Bitcoin and one bit coin is worth is $5,000 and I leave it wallet for year and now a single bitcoin is worth $2,000. I have lost money, but it also works the other way around.
Another source also claims there has been nearly $1 billion lost in cryptocurrency scams (KCRA, 2021). These scams have shot up over 60% since 2018, the problem comes when people are unfamiliar with how cryptos work (KCRA, 2021). Like I stated before, when a person understand how crypto’s work via sending and receiving, they are a great way to send money, it keeps the government out of your business and allows you to pay for things “under the radar” if you wish too.
“PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Cryptocurrency is a new type of digital money used entirely online, but the FBI estimates 24,000 Americans got caught up in scams involving it just last year alone. The cost? Nearly $1 billion dollars of regular peoples’ hard-earned money.”
After watching the video describing blockchains, I now have a much more clear understanding of what cryptocurrency is and how it works. I also learned how the benefits with using cryptocurrency and blockchain concepts have gained momentum over the past few years. Some benefits mentioned in the video were the avoidance of bank fees and bank approval/control that may stop or slow a transaction. I personally struggle with the entitled attitude banks have to charge so many various fees to house other people’s money. You can use any bank but the more commercialized, the worse the fee issue is.
Unfortunately, with any great new idea, there are individuals who make it their mission to take advantage of any weaknesses. Blockchains were designed to help people make safer more reliable transactions between one another. There are what is called “miners” who analyze and approve blockchains. These people work out stringent math problems to create these blockchains so that hackers/scammers can not take advantage of people’s hard earned money. Blockchains/cryptocurrency may fall victim to various types of scams/fraud such as Ponzi schemes, malware, fake crypto services, advance-fee scams and more. “Detecting cryptocurrency scams is not easy for the average user. Although a few websites allow users to report and search scams, they are not complete, and they often provide inconsistent, when not erroneous, information. A main issue of these websites is that scam reports must be inserted manually, either by site administrators or by users, so they cannot keep up with the fast pace at which scams are created.”