LinkedIn has emerged as a new hotspot for crypto fraudsters to fish for unsuspecting and innocent victims. The observation has been highlighted by Sean Ragan, an FBI special agent, in-charge of the San Francisco and Sacramento, California, field offices. Crypto fraudsters have been posing as professional financial advisors and reaching out to LinkedIn users, offering them scam schemes. As per a CNBC report, a bunch of LinkedIn users have seen losses ranging from $200,000 (roughly Rs. 1.5 crore) and $1.6 million (roughly Rs. 12 crore) owing to crypto scams.
“This type of fraudulent activity is significant, and there are many potential victims, and there are many past and current victims,” CNBC quoted Ragan as saying.
The fraudsters on LinkedIn have been known to direct victims to legit crypto investment platforms, give them advise on proper investments, gain their trust over some months, and then convince them to move their investments into self-controlled sites.
“So, the criminals, that’s how they make money, that’s what they focus their time and attention on. And they are always thinking about different ways to victimise people, victimise companies. And they spend their time doing their homework, defining their goals and their strategies, and their tools and tactics that they use,” the FBI agent reportedly added.
LinkedIn has addressed the subject revealing that there indeed, has been a spike in fraud cases bubbling on its platform.
The Microsoft-owned job seeking platform, launched in 2002, is used by over 830 million users from around the world.
The platform claims to have removed 32 million questionable accounts in 2021, in order to ensure safety of its legitimate users.
“We work every day to keep our members safe, and this includes investing in automated and manual defences to detect and address fake accounts, false information, and suspected fraud. One of the things that I would really love for us to do more is get into proactive education for members,” Oscar Rodriguez, LinkedIn’s senior director of trust, privacy and equity said in a blog post.
In its semiannual report, LinkedIn has claimed that its automated defences caught 99.1 percent of spam and scams, a total of 70.8 million, between July and December last year.
Rodriguez has advised LinkedIn users to report strangers asking for money, job postings that sound too good to be true, and romantic messages that may manipulate potential victims to step inside a scam scheme.