4 Red Flags That It’s A Crypto Opportunity Scam

Free Stock photos by Vecteezy

Do you know how to recognize a crypto opportunity scam? It’s important to learn because con artists prey on those who don’t know the difference between a legit crypto platform and a fake one, or who don’t know a Ponzi scheme from a legitimate affiliate program.

Scammers fool people into thinking that their well-designed websites give them a semblance of legitimacy, but on closer inspection, these sites won’t pass muster. Here are some giant red flags you should be aware of:

No SSL Certificate

A website that deals with cryptocurrencies should always have an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate installed. You can easily verify this because websites with no SSL only display HTTP before their domain names and websites with SSL show HTTPS.

Many scam websites disappear overnight. Once they’ve scammed a certain number of people, they’ll shut down that site and move on to a fresh domain to avoid being caught. It’s easy to transfer website files from one domain to another; this is why these scammers can set up shop very quickly.

It’s Too Good To Be True

Whether you’re trying to get the best rates for your dollars or your bitcoins, it’s only natural that you’d want the best possible deal. Since cryptocurrencies are decentralized, most crypto exchanges have their own exchange rates. However, these rates don’t vary by much.

If you see a website offering rates that are significantly lower or higher than other established exchanges, then it’s a giant red flag. It’s better to do business with a trusted platform with higher fees than to try to get the best deal out of an unknown website that could possibly swindle you out of your entire fortune. If it’s new and you don’t know anyone using it, it’s usually safer to stick with what you know.

Crypto Ponzi Schemes

Some Ponzi scams, also called high yield investment programs, are not as obvious especially if they’ve been around for a few weeks or months. This is because their first members would already have received their profits (derived from payments by new recruits) and would be posting glowing reviews on the Internet.

At first glance, you might be fooled into thinking it’s a legitimate crypto operation especially if you personally know someone who’s made money from the scheme. Check out those positive reviews, and you’ll see they’re basically saying the same thing. They may even have their link in the review so you, too, can enjoy the incredible profits.

Unfortunately, once they can’t recruit more people to unknowingly (or knowingly) fund the scheme, they take off with the money leaving the people at the bottom with nothing. If they “guarantee” profits, it’s a scam.

Lack of Transparency

If you are looking at a new opportunity, but you can’t find anything about the founders or other people involved, it’s probably a scam. Same for if there is no whitepaper or if the whitepaper doesn’t give any real information.

While it’s true that many start-ups have the idea of being community-owned, which makes sense, it’s still important to be transparent so potential investors know that the company is legit. So always do your research. If you can’t find the information you need, it’s wise to pass on the “opportunity”.

What to Look For

If you’re considering a new opportunity, first look for the people who started it. See if you can find them on LinkedIn and other social media.

  • Are they active?
  • Are they accessible?
  • Are they reputable?
  • Do they have the knowledge to make this project work?

Look at the whitepaper.

  • Are the goals realistic?
  • Are they achievable?
  • Do they align with your own goals?
  • Does the company have a logical plan to make it happen?

You can probably think of other things to look for as well, but these are very important to protect yourself from being scammed or even just being a victim of a very disorganized organization. Always do your due diligence before risking your assets.




Kathleen Marshall is a certified cryptocurrency expert and trader working on her blockchain certification. She’s been a freelancer since 1996.

Recommended from Medium

Gap Analysis: Crypto Exchange Software

ARYZE — Bringing mass adoption of blockchain to Denmark

Top ICO list, ICO rating, ICO calendar

An article on the benefits of S-wallet to users

[Media] “AI Is Helping People Manage Their Crypto Assets”

Glitter Finance Advisor Spotlight: Bullish Block Capital

MahaDAO Whitelist Results & IDO Price Details

In the first year of NFT, how did the public chain perform in this field?

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Kathleen Marshall

Kathleen Marshall

Kathleen Marshall is a certified cryptocurrency expert and trader working on her blockchain certification. She’s been a freelancer since 1996.

More from Medium



Things Crypto Bros Can Learn From Money Heist Series

EU surveillance of everything crypto?

The basics of bitcoin and blockchain in under 6 minutes