Members of a local police force in the state of Connecticut have helped a theft victim recover roughly $23,000 in stolen crypto funds.
Police Are on the Case!
The money was deposited under false pretenses to several nearby bitcoin ATMs after a complaint was filed in September of last year. The victim had allegedly been scammed into depositing the money into various machines around the state, and the case was noted by the Milford Police Department. It was stated that more than $41,000 had been taken from the victim.
In a statement, the police agency explained:
The funds were traced to two major cryptocurrency exchanges located in both the United States and the Cayman Islands. During the month of September, SOCITF investigators were able to recover a portion of the bitcoin from the two exchanges. Investigators learned that the suspects reside outside of the United States and no arrest is anticipated at this time.
Situations like these have become increasingly common in the crypto space, and it looks like bitcoin and crypto-based ATMs are now widely used for fraudulent purposes. Typically, situations like these arise when a scammer contacts a potential victim – usually by phone (a huge red flag because crypto companies often don’t call their customers) – and says that there is a problem with their bank account or with some other financial tool they’ve been utilizing, and that their money is in danger.
From there, the crypto scammer tells the victim that to make sure their accounts are not vulnerable, they should download a bitcoin app and purchase the asset. From there, they need to make deposits into various machines so that the money can be monitored while being transferred. What the victim likely doesn’t know is that their digital money is going to an address that the scammer controls. When they give them the money, it’s likely they’ll never see it again, as it’s now in the hands of the cyberthief and crypto funds can be notoriously difficult to take back.
Other incidents involve romance scams, in which those looking for love online are tricked into making deposits into thief-controlled crypto platforms.
Much of the Money Has Been Returned
In this case, the victim was lucky in that police were able to seize back roughly $23,000 of the stolen money on December 30 and have it transferred back to the person. While not all the funds have been recovered, the move is considered a win for the scammed individual and a potential step forward in the world’s fight against crypto.
Police in the area are warning residents that these kinds of incidents are becoming increasingly common, and that all traders need to be on the lookout. If anything smells or looks fishy, they should report it to local law enforcement right away.