Press Release

US FTC Warns Consumers Against Crypto ATM Scam

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) of the United States has warned consumers about cryptocurrency ATM scams. “There’s a new twist on scammers asking people to pay with cryptocurrency,” according to the FTC.

The FTC Issues a Warning Regarding Cryptocurrency ATM Scams

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) of the United States issued a scam alert involving cryptocurrency ATMs on Monday. Cristina Miranda of the FTC’s division of consumer and business education posted the consumer notice:

There’s a new spin on scammers asking people to pay with cryptocurrency.

“It involves an impersonator, a QR code, and a trip to a store (directed by a scammer on the phone) to send your money to them through a cryptocurrency ATM,” according to the notice.

According to the FTC, scammers may call victims pretending to be from the government, law enforcement, or a local utility company. They could also impersonate a romantic interest you met online or someone calling to tell you you’ve won the lottery. They will keep calling you until they have your money.

The scammer will “direct you to withdraw money from your bank, investment, or retirement accounts,” according to the FTC.

They will then direct you to a store with a cryptocurrency ATM where you can purchase cryptocurrency. Then they will send you a QR code that includes their address.

“Once you purchase the cryptocurrency, you must scan the code in order for the money to be transferred to them.” But then your money is gone,” the FTC stated emphatically.

The agency emphasized the following:

Nobody from the government, law enforcement, utility company, or prize promoter will ever tell you to pay them with cryptocurrency.”

“If someone does, it’s a scam, every time. Any unexpected tweet, text, email, call, or social media message — particularly from someone you don’t know — asking you to pay them in advance for something, including with cryptocurrency, is a scam,” the FTC warned.