(WKBN) – Cryptocurrency is similar to other currencies, except that it is digital and only exists electronically. Bitcoin is just one example of many cryptocurrencies that are available for consumers to purchase, as well as use for other purchases.
However, when buying and selling cryptocurrency, it is important you take safety measures to ensure you are not being scammed or misled in any way. It is also important to be well-informed on how it all works and what you can and can’t use it for.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, it is not uncommon for scammers to try and find new ways to steal your money, including cryptocurrency. This is why you should be cautious and educated when purchasing cryptocurrency.
These are some red flags that the Federal Trade Commission says to look out for to make sure you don’t get scammed:
- Companies promising that you can earn lots of money in a short time
- Some scammers may send unsolicited job offers to help recruit cryptocurrency investors, sell cryptocurrency, mine cryptocurrency or help with converting cash to bitcoin.
- Some scammers tell you to pay in cryptocurrency for the right to recruit others into a program.
There are ways to protect yourself from getting scammed. You can report fraud and other suspicious activity involving cryptocurrency to the Federal Trade Commission, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission or the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
It is also important to be mindful of how much you invest when purchasing crypto. Investor.gov reminds us there is “significant risk involved in putting your money into something that hasn’t been around very long.”
One suggestion it gives is to only invest money you are willing to lose. So, in the event you don’t make the money back, it doesn’t devastate you financially.
“It’s not like you’re just putting $10 in the bank. You know you’re potentially investing $10 into something that can help your money grow,” said Jeremy Oliver, a Youngstown Native and co-founder of FAAM Coin cryptocurrency.
He says crypto can be a great, beneficial thing when done correctly with education on how it works.
Investor.gov suggests you do your research and evaluate your financial goals when choosing to invest in cryptocurrency. Verify the platforms you are using to invest are legit and secure.