A crypto airdrop is a marketing tactic where blockchain companies distribute free tokens to users. But as much as the attention, it also brings scammers.
Digital currencies have caused ripples in blockchain-based services, and major players are already feeling the heat from the competition. Airdropping tokens appear to be a marketing stunt to create awareness about a new currency entering the market.
However, recent developments indicate that scammers are airdropping fake tokens to digital wallet holders and stealing personal information and funds instead. Stories surfaced throughout Twitter, Reddit, and Facebook where victims warn inexperienced investors of this new airdrop token scam.
“scammers behind these airdrop token scams continue to roam free without any repercussions”— Timothy Benson
Earlier the term was used concerning apple devices. But the term isn’t constrained to just apple now. It has become significant, and so are the related scams. In one such event, a fake Twitter account with 60k followers, claiming to be the Moonbirds project offering up an NFT airdrop, tweeted, “To celebrate almost 60k followers on our official Twitter account, we want to give you the biggest airdrop in the history of the NFT community. To find more go to the airdrop page”. The link opened to a fake airdrop page.
Few people realized the scam until they read Moonbirds’ verified account and put up a post to beware of the scammers.
Such crypto scams often aim to gain private information such as security codes or trick an unsuspecting person into sending cryptocurrency to a compromised digital wallet. From October 2020 to March 2021, reports of crypto-related scams shot up. Nearly 7,000 people reported losses of more than $80 million.
In another kind of scam, the crooks ask for Bitcoin and Ethereum cryptocurrencies. They claim they will immediately send it back 2x to the address you sent it from. For example, if you send one BTC, you will receive two BTC at the address you sent BTC from. According to the plot, you can also participate using any wallet or exchange. But it always results negatively, and investors lose all their money.
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Timothy Benson, a mining scams expert at Cyber-Forensics.net, says, “Once a user receives a scam token, their immediate goal is to exchange the new token, as the so-called blockchain service claims to incentivize token receivers for doing so.” But as soon as the users try to exchange the coin, they fail to exchange the airdropped token.
Prestigious organizations like Cyber-Forensics.net, a cyber forensics service for online scam victims, are on alert mode, attempting to identify the modus operandi.
How to avoid becoming a victim of an airdrop token scam?
Recognize red flags: Avoid free tokens that are not exchangeable on major platforms. Scammers may try to attract victims into signing malicious contracts.
Identify fake projects: The ease of creating fake projects has substantially led to an increase in the number of airdrop token scams. But experts say staying aware is the best tool to avoid losing funds unnecessarily.
Understand how an airdrop token works: An airdrop is a promotional event typically performed by startups to promote their virtual currency projects. The project aims to create awareness about the new coin offering and get people interested in trading by sending participants free coins to their wallets, usually Bitcoin or Ethereum. But to get the free gift, recipients may be required to have a minimum quantity of coins in their digital wallets. Additionally, they may be asked to promote the coin on social media sites, etc.
What to do if targeted by airdrop token scammers? As cryptocurrencies continue to soar high, airdrop token scams show no signs of taking the back seat. Here is what investors should do if they are being targeted:
Secure the account immediately: The preliminary action to take before suitable help arrives is to close the faulty website browser, change the password of payment apps quickly, and disconnect all the devices from the network.
Contact fund recovery services: If the lost amount is significantly large, let the experts take the matter into hand. They will execute well-planned and result-oriented strategies to draw practical conclusions. Victims can also seek appropriate counseling to bring criminals to justice during court proceedings.
How can fund recovery services help victims of airdrop token scam recover stolen cryptocurrency?
Airdrop token scams have become increasingly popular. Fund recovery services often consist of experts who specialize in helping victims recover lost cryptocurrency in any online scam or other financial-related scams by providing the following services:
Competent security advice: the aftermath of any online scam can be devastating. At times, this impedes individuals’ or organizations’ decision-making capabilities. Hiring qualified professionals give the process an authoritative power to choose actionable measures.
Employ security software and firewalls: If the hackers could penetrate victims’ computer systems by brute force, professionals would delete any malicious virus that could potentially damage available data. They will install safety firewalls to roadblock attackers in the future.
Back-up data and systems: It’s crucial for token holders to retrieve their lost crypto coins as they are extremely valuable in today’s market. Professionals might be able to secure lost data and trace which addresses funds flowed to.
Besides blocking unauthorized access, professionals will help victims safeguard private keys to digital wallets, credit card information, personal information, and pictures stored on devices. This data must be kept safe as scammers may exploit victims by taking hold of this data and asking for ransomware to release it.
But make sure to search for a reliable recovery service before hiring them. Successful fund recovery highly depends on the type of service employed. Victims can look at online reviews if they don’t know where to start. For example, several positive reviews suggest that Cyber-Forensics.net is a credible company.
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