How to spot online scams

In the article How can I secure my Bitpanda account? we explain what you can do to make sure that your account stays as safe as it can be with measures such as Two Factor Authentication (2FA) and using strong passwords. In this article, we’re going to build on that and explain how you can protect your assets from external threats that you might encounter online such as scammers or malware.

The "send 1 ETH, receive 5 ETH back" scam

Impersonators of popular accounts (like ours) act like the real accounts on social media, they copy posts and generally try to convince unsuspecting users that they are the real account. Sometimes, they also try to contact people directly on the behalf of the company they are impersonating making unlikely offers like "send 1 ETH and get 5 ETH back." Unfortunately, lots of people fall for this scam and lose their coins to the scammer’s address.

The scam looks like this:

eth_scam.png

An easy-to-remember rule is: “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”

Normally (but not necessarily always), the offending account will post in the comments section or as a reply underneath a legitimate company post. It’s important to know that Bitpanda will never do a giveaway of this nature.

These are the links to Bitpanda’s verified social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Medium, Instagram and here is the link to our official Telegram groups.

Look for the badge on Twitter and Facebook and compare the handle

Keep your eyes open for the verification badges on social media sites such as the grey verification badge on Facebook and the blue verified badge on Twitter. They look like this:

twitter_scam.png

As a rule, you should generally exercise proper judgement on the web and don’t trust accounts with little content and followers that could be up to no good.

On social media platforms such as Twitter, your @username or handle is entirely unique, meaning that only one account can have it at a time. Therefore, you can be sure that if an account is not @bitpanda — it’s definitely not us! This is a 100% safe method to verify that you’re dealing with us.

Don’t get scammed on Telegram

If you are going to make use of Bitpanda’s official Telegram groups then it’s important that you know who the real employees are.

Here is a list of verified Bitpanda staff who are active in our groups:

  • Clemens | Bitpanda @clemens_bitpanda
  • Chris | Bitpanda @chris_bitpanda
  • Philipp | Bitpanda @philipp_bitpanda
  • Raphael | Bitpanda @raphael_bitpanda
  • Dec | Bitpanda @dec_bitpanda

Bitpanda will NEVER ask for your personal information anywhere

Legitimate organisations will NEVER ask for your important login credentials or sensitive data but there are those out there who will try.

Phishing is the fraudulent practice of sending messages purporting to be from reputable companies to make people reveal personal information: this could be credit card numbers, passwords, secret keys etc. Sometimes, phishers will even clone a website to look identical to the original in order to steal your data. So when visiting Bitpanda, make sure to check the URL looks like this:

bitpanda_ssl.png

Also be alert for questionable downloads and don’t click on weird attachments or links in emails, this could well be malicious "mining" software that — at first — claims to do one thing but actually gains access to your device in the background. Once they have gained access, hackers could see what you are typing with keylogging software subsequently revealing passwords or codes. They could even potentially make screen grabs and see what you’re up to.

Be sceptical and always double check

Finally, just be sensible on the web. Make sure to stay up-to-date with the latests scams as scammers are constantly finding new ways to trick users, often going to great lengths to do so. Be cautious with every click and never disclose your sensitive data to anyone online.

Read in full on our Medium Blog

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