Consumers have lost over $1bn in crypto scams since 2021, FTC finds
Over 46,000 consumers reported losing more than $1bn in cryptocurrency scams since the start of 2021, according to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Nearly half of consumers who reported losing digital currencies in a scam said it started with an advert, post or message on a social media platform.
In its release, the FTC said that people aged 20-to-49 were more than three times as likely as older age groups to have reported losing money to a cryptocurrency scam. However, the latter group reported losing larger sums.
Reports point to social media and crypto as a “combustible combination” for fraud, according to the US government agency, adding that $575m of all losses linked to digital currency frauds were about “bogus investment opportunities”.
The report also found that almost four out of every ten dollars lost to a fraud originating on social media was lost in crypto, “far more” than any other payment method, with Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, and Telegram being the top social media platforms in such cases.
The average reported loss for an individual was $2,600. The FTC said Bitcoin, Tether and Ethereum were the top cryptocurrencies that people used to pay scammers.
Subscribe to our Editor's weekly newsletter