Houston cryptocurrency scam cases rising as more rush to invest, FBI says

Samica Knight Image
Wednesday, May 1, 2024
Crypto scam swindling thousands of dollars from Houstonians
The FBI is warning Houstonians of a cryptocurrency scam that is swindling thousands of dollars from victims.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A sophisticated and somewhat complicated scam has the phones at the FBI ringing off the hook.

When it comes to the latest crypto investment scam, the FBI says suspects are tricking people into believing they are missing out on big Bitcoin bucks, and agents are seeing "exponential" growth in the Houston area.

Federal agents warn that thieves are setting up a fake website, advertising a new cryptocurrency.

According to the FBI, that website usually has lots of information on it and looks sophisticated, clean, and legitimate.

The only problem is that the supposed cryptocurrency they're advertising is fake.

Keep in mind, the FBI stresses these thieves are betting on victims not knowing much about this type of digital payment system or how it works.

Next, the scammers will reach out to you by email, phone, social media, or even through a friend.

"They will start with just a small dollar amount. They'll say, 'Give me $5,000,' and they will show the made-up websites and apps where they're able to track their investment," Heith Janke, FBI assistant special agent in charge of the Houston division, said. "It will show they're receiving great returns, and then they will say, 'Now give me $50,000. Now give me $100,000,' and they go and do that until they bleed the person out of their entire savings, and then they disappear."

Don't fall for it. It's a scam.

The FBI urges you to delete the email, hang up the phone, and close out social media.

Last year, this crypto-scam costed victims billions of dollars in the U.S. and $300 million in Texas

If this has happened to you, call the FBI. There are special agents dedicated to this type of crime.

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