Scammers conned Vancouver victims out of close to $2 million last week with fake promises of romance or financial gain.
Police are warning of a recent surge in scams involving money transfers made in the form of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
“Predators will often exploit two powerful human emotions: greed and love,” said Cst. Tania Visintin with the Vancouver Police Department.
“Victims are typically lured in with the idea that they will be a part of an opportunity to make money or in other cases, they will be doing a friend or romantic interest a favour.”
Many are approached through social media or dating websites. These types of crimes can go unreported due to the embarrassment the victim feels.
Cryptocurrency frauds are difficult to investigate the chances of locating and identifying a suspect are low, Visintin said.
Suspects are often based overseas and mask their identity through sophisticated, untraceable virtual private networks.
To report these matters to police call 604-717-4021 or to remain anonymous, Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
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