Crypto scams are profitable. There is a lot of hype around cryptos and many incautious investors around, so it is not uncommon that crypto crime attracts so many people. CipherTrace’s latest reports have shown that crypto scammers were able to swindle $4.26 billion USD this year.
While less money was stolen in the second quarter than in the first one, the numbers are still very worrisome. Exchanges lost $356 million in the first quarter and $125 million in the second one.
Exit scams, however, are the biggest winner when it comes to taking a lot of money. These scams alone were able to steal $3.1 billion USD from investors, more than half of all the money stolen.
What is actually considered an exit scam, however, is debatable. Quadriga CX, the exchange whose CEO took its money to the grave, is considered in contributing $195 million to the exit scam list, for instance.
The major winner, however, is certainly Plus Token. The scam was able to steal $2.9 million USD from investors using a pyramid scheme. Alone, this scam was responsible for two-thirds of the stolen funds.
CipherTrace’s research also indicated that Bitcoin is still the token most used by criminals, despite the popularity of Monero. In most scams involving ransomware and the dark web are mostly related to BTC. This correlates with the high dominance that BTC has in the market right now, of over 70%. Monero is still widely used in cryptojacking activities, though.