Crypto gaming scams alert: Philippines police warn of millions at risk as fraudulent play-to-earn schemes surge

In this post:

  • Philippines’ National Police warns of play-to-earn (P2E) gaming scams, with custom-created apps stealing millions in crypto.
  • The police bulletin highlights both legitimate platforms like Axie Infinity and risks such as market volatility and unsupported wallets.
  • The warning calls attention to the need for regulation and education in P2E gaming, emphasizing the thin line between legitimate games and fraud.

The National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP ACG) of the Philippines has warned residents about the risks associated with play-to-earn (P2E) games, revealing that these platforms can be used to steal crypto assets worth millions of dollars. The cybercrime unit’s latest bulletin highlighted the theft of unsuspecting victims’ crypto assets through custom-created gaming apps, luring victims with promises of substantial financial rewards.

These fraudulent gaming apps often display fake rewards that accumulate as the victim plays, only to siphon the funds once the victim stops depositing crypto assets into a compromised wallet. The cybercrime unit noted that hackers usually escape detection due to cryptocurrency’s unregulated nature.

The legitimate and the fraudulent: A thin line in crypto gaming

While acknowledging the advantages of crypto gaming, such as the popular P2E platform Axie Infinity, the police bulletin also emphasized the potential risks. Players can lose their digital assets by sending them to unsupported wallets or fall victim to the market volatility of in-game native tokens.

The warning also cited specific examples of fraudulent activities, such as victims being lured by “fake rewards” on custom-created gaming apps. Confidence tricksters establish trust with victims online, direct them to an online game where players can purportedly earn crypto, and then steal the money via malware activated when the victim joins the game.

The Philippine police’s mention of Axie Infinity was not accidental, as the game’s blockchain infrastructure fell victim to one of the largest hacks in history, with $622 million in user funds stolen. Although not labeled a scam, the game’s business model remains vulnerable to market fluctuations, as evidenced by the significant drop in Axie’s active player count and the price of its in-game currency, SLP.

The warning also extended beyond the Philippines, highlighting international incidents such as the much-promised but never-delivered game CryptoZoo, accused of being an alleged scam, and the controversy involving YouTube influencer Logan Paul.

The police bulletin concluded with practical advice for players, urging them to conduct thorough research before committing funds and to be vigilant for fake individuals and deceptive links.

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 decisions.

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Axies image taken from Axie Infinity official X account
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