In a shocking turn of events, fraudulent actors targeted patrons of the insolvent cryptocurrency brokerage, Voyager Digital, as they briefly gained a window of opportunity to withdraw portions of their funds. The scammers employed a range of cunning tactics, as detailed in a report by Bloomberg, with promises of elevated returns through counterfeit websites being a prevalent approach.
Darren Azman, the legal representative for Voyager, disclosed that these scammers seized on a month-long window during the period from June 23 to July 22. During this time, Voyager’s clientele executed withdrawals totaling a staggering $490 million, constituting approximately 80% of the available funds. The situation did not go unnoticed, as law enforcement agencies were promptly informed and have been actively addressing the distressing issue.
One of the tactics employed involved luring Voyager customers with deceptive promises of significant returns through counterfeit websites. Once connected to these sites, unsuspecting customers had their wallets siphoned by scammers. The gravity of the situation prompted the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) to issue a cautionary advisory warning Voyager customers to be vigilant against these deceptive tactics.
Voyager Digital exploit
The deception extended to fraudulent letters, calls, and emails, bearing the name of Voyager CEO Stephen Ehrlich, falsely inflating returns through the counterfeit website. Fortunately, the ruse managed to deceive only a few customers, as noted by Azman.
The troubling developments for Voyager began with the dramatic downfall of Three Arrows Capital (3AC), which had previously managed an impressive $10 billion in assets. The company’s operational approach revolved around sourcing industry funds and investing in various cryptocurrency ventures. However, the collapse of terraUSD dealt a severe blow to 3AC’s financial stability, setting off a cascade of events that entangled Voyager in a web of financial turmoil.
In response to 3AC’s failure to honor its loan obligations, Voyager took swift action on July 1, suspending “trading, deposits, withdrawals, and loyalty rewards.” While a necessary step to mitigate the brewing crisis, this decision undoubtedly caused pain and frustration for the platform’s users.
Just four days later, Voyager had no choice but to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. This rapid descent from its pinnacle served as a stark reminder of the unforgiving nature of the cryptocurrency landscape, where fortunes can change in an instant.