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Indian engineer falls prey to deceptive crypto scheme

TL;DR

  • A 53-year-old engineer from Bengaluru, India, lost Rs 95 lakh (US$114,230) in a cryptocurrency investment scam.
  • The engineer was duped by a scammer on Instagram named Sonia Shenoy, who claimed to represent a global investment firm.
  • After investing in Bitcoin, the engineer was misled to believe in a potential profit of Rs 2 crore (US$240,000), for which he paid a substantial amount as TDS.

 

In a recent incident, a 53-year-old engineer from Bengaluru, India, suffered a significant financial loss due to a cryptocurrency investment scam. The engineer was deceived into investing Rs 95 lakh (US$114,230) in Bitcoin (BTC) by a scammer posing as a representative of a global investment firm.

The deceptive scheme

The scam began when the engineer, whose identity has not been disclosed, connected with a person named Sonia Shenoy on Instagram. Shenoy, claiming to represent a global investment firm, persuaded the engineer to invest substantially in Bitcoin in January last year. The engineer, trusting Shenoy’s assertions, invested over $114,000 in BTC.

By July, Shenoy convinced the engineer of a potential profit of Rs 2 crore (US$240,000), but with a caveat. The victim was told to pay Rs 50 lakh for TDS (Tax Deducted at Source) to access these profits. Driven by the prospect of high returns, the engineer procured this amount by taking loans from various banks. Unfortunately, as time passed, it became evident that the promised profit was a fabrication, leaving the engineer in financial distress.

This case is not isolated to Bengaluru, a city witnessing rising cryptocurrency scams. In 2021, a crypto trader and college lecturer in the city lost Rs 10 lakh (US$12,000) to a similar scam. These incidents highlight the vulnerabilities and risks associated with the crypto market.

While offering opportunities for legitimate gains, the crypto market is also a breeding ground for fraudulent activities. In a related development, crypto community investigator ZachXBT drew attention to a Discord scam in the crypto sphere that led to losses of nearly $880,000 in cryptocurrencies. This month, the FBI has also issued warnings about scammers impersonating venture capital executives to defraud investors.

The risks of crypto investments

These incidents underscore the need for caution and due diligence in cryptocurrency investments. The allure of high returns often blinds investors to the risks involved. Experts recommend thorough research and verification of the credibility of investment firms and individuals before committing funds.

The incidents in Bengaluru are a stark reminder of the dark side of the crypto market. Investors are advised to be vigilant, seeking advice from financial experts and not getting swayed by seemingly lucrative offers that are too good to be true. As the market for cryptocurrencies grows, so does the need for investor education and awareness about the potential risks involved.

The loss suffered by the Bengaluru engineer serves as a cautionary tale for all potential crypto investors. It highlights the importance of being skeptical of unverified investment opportunities, especially in cryptocurrency’s volatile and often unregulated world. As the market evolves, investor vigilance and education remain crucial in navigating these waters of digital investment.

Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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Mutuma Maxwell

Maxwell especially enjoys penning pieces about blockchain and cryptocurrency. He started his venture into blogging in 2020, later focusing on the world of cryptocurrencies. His life's work is to introduce the concept of decentralization to people worldwide.

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