Beware of fake work-from-home jobs, it’s a ploy to steal your crypto

Be cautious of an employer who demands you send them cryptocurrency to start your dream job working from home. The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) says it’s probably just another scam. 

In a June 4 statement, the FBI warned of a rise in work-from-home job advertisement scams. The scammers will contact their potential victims with an unsolicited call or message, offering a relatively simple job such as rating restaurants or “optimizing” a service by repeatedly clicking a button.

The victims might even believe they’re earning money — as scammers will direct victims to a fake interface, showing they’re earning money (though they will never be able to cash it out.

The con hits home when the victim is directed to make cryptocurrency payments to the fake employer to “unlock” more work — except the payments go directly to the scammer.

“You are directed to make cryptocurrency payments to your employer as part of a job,” the FBI noted.

Red flags that could signal a scam include job descriptions that excessively use the word “optimization” and ones that do not require references during the recruitment procedure.

With the increasing popularity of the work-from-home lifestyle, it’s no surprise that more victims are falling for the trap. The amount of remote workers globally rose to 28% by the end of 2023, according to Statista data.

Percentage of people who work from home all or most of the time worldwide. Source: Statista

Remote workers also have the freedom to choose where they base themselves.

In a recent interview with Cointelegraph Magazine, Canggu-based crypto consultant Dominic Frei said he brought his wife and two young kids from Switzerland to Bali in pursuit of a more desirable lifestyle and climate.

Related: FBI warning against crypto money transmitters ‘appears’ to be aimed at mixers

It comes only months after the FBI released an alarming statistic about the amount of crypto-related fraud within the nation in 2023.

On March 9, Cointelegraph cited a report from the FBI stating that investment losses involving crypto increased from $2.57 billion in 2022 to around $3.94 billion in 2023, representing a 53% increase.

One of the most common crypto scams people are falling victim to is romance scams.

This is where a criminal adopts a fake online identity to gain a victim’s affection and trust before creating a story to persuade the victim to send crypto, only to vanish after.

Magazine: Become a Bali crypto digital nomad like me: Here’s how

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