Common Scams

Overview of Common Scams

Introduction This document set is intended to be a compendium of types of scams that can be found in Ethereum and in the wider cryptocurrency ecosystem. Why is This Important? Security is probably the most important challenge currently facing Ethereum and other blockchains. In 2017, hundreds of millions of dollars worth of ETH, BTC, and LTC was stolen or locked by hackers. This challenge faces every user, exchange, and organization operating in the blockchain ecosystem. The most dedicated and…

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Hardware Wallet Scams and Hacks

General Tips for Securing Hardware Wallets Update the firmware of your device. Don't leave your device plugged in. Make sure your device is physically secure. Don't purchase pre-owned devices. Pre-owned / Used hardware wallet attacks How is this done? In this type of attack, a bad actor would purchase hardware wallets, record the private keys of these wallets, and post them for resale on Amazon or eBay. This works because hardware wallets are in demand and often-times out of stock. People are…

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Malicious Software

Malicious Software-Based Attacks Malicious software is anything that changes the functionality of your computer for the purpose of making someone else profit in some way. Malicious software can come in many forms, from Keyloggers to Clipboard Hijackers to RATs and Trojans . This malware can be used to steal your funds by taking your private keys (the access key to your public address) and transferring your funds away. How can I mitigate this? To mitigate this, users should always practice…

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Phishing Scams and Hacks

Phishing Phishing is scamming via impersonating individuals, organizations, operations, websites, etc. Phishing is also the most common type of scam / attack on your funds in any cryptocurrency ecosystem. This is due to the low cost of attack and relatively high success rate. This type of attack exploits people's inattentiveness when it comes to their security. Users generally prefer to have ease-of-use over security, so they're not used to having to validate that they're using the correct…

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Privacy Concerns

Privacy Concerns Posting Your Public Keys on Social Media Why is this a problem? You should never do this, especially if you have a large amount of crypto-wealth, because it paints a target on your back. If people know that you have cryptocurrency, you may become the victim of a targeted hacking campaign. Interacting With Your Private Keys on Public Networks Why is this a problem? The increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies correlates with an increase in activity by bad actors. It is possible…

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