A one sentence summary of all the most popular scams so you know what to look out for.
SIM swap
How it works: Scammers use personal info to trick your phone company into transferring your number to their SIM, then use your phone + personal info to gain access to emails, crypto exchanges and more.
How to avoid it: Always use an Authenticator based 2FA instead of phone, and don't link email addresses to your phone. Never reveal the phone number / email address attached to your crypto accounts.
Fake versions of popular apps, browser extensions and exchange websites.
How it works: You click a link that installs/visits a replica version of the real thing, which will send your passwords and personal info to scammers and/or sneak in scammer wallet addresses when you're transferring crypto.
How to avoid it: Only install apps, wallets and extensions from the official website; triple check any website addresses for anything crypto related. If you use google don't click on the "ad" version of websites, as scammers sometimes pay for their scam version to show up there.
Clipboard Hacks
How it works: Malware takes the crypto address you copied to the clipboard and replaces it with the scammer's address, so your crypto gets sent to the scammer.
How to avoid it: Triple check the address you're sending crypto to, if you find you've been compromised, a full reformat + factory reset is the only option. Change all crypto passwords, email passwords, new authenticator on separate device.
Gas trap
How it works: Someone posts the seed to a wallet full of ERC20 tokens; in order to take the tokens you need to transfer ETH to the wallet to pay for gas; they have a bot that takes the ETH straight away.
How to avoid it: Don't trust anyone giving you free stuff.
Pump and Dump Groups
How it works: You join a group that claims they will pump a coin to dump on the general public for a profit, however the organisers have already filled their bags and dump on the group instead when they release the name of the coin.
How to avoid it: Now you know what it looks like you can avoid it.
Rug Pull / Exit scam
How it works: Developers of a shitcoin spend months shilling their coin & paying influencers to shill their coin. Once the price has reached a certain point they dump their bags or drain liquidity pools taking everyone's money and the coin's value goes to zero,
How to avoid it: Thoroughly research every coin you invest in, make sure the developer team are doxxed and are trustoworthy. Don't buy any coins shilled by influencers.
Social engineering tricks / Phishing
How it works: Scammers trick you into sending them crypto, your seed phrase, or your personal information. They might pretend to be customer service operators or high profile traders and promise you all kinds of things. They will use the medium of email, DMs, social media channels or chat groups.
How to avoid it: Don't trust anyone who offers you free stuff. Don't share your seed phrase or personal info with anyone.
Fake exchange or DeFi websites.
How it works: A hot new DeFi project is offering 1000% APY if you deposit your coins with them. Once you transfer the coin, they take it, or you see paper gains but you'll never be able to withdraw, or you get rugged - either way you can never get your money back.
How to avoid it: Thoroughly research any exchange or DeFi product before you invest with them.
Ponzi/Pyramid coins.
How it works: These coins promise high returns or high gains, usually they involve deflationary tokenomics or other tricks to get people interested, all the price gain however is through other investors, there's no actual product or service associated with the coin and the price will eventually collapse.
How to avoid it: Thoroughly research coins before investing - check out some of the DYOR guides that have been posted here.
Fake coins
How it works: Scammers create a coin with a similar name or ticker code to another popular coin and you end up buying the fake coin instead of the real one.
How to avoid it: Check the coin you want is offered on the exchange you're using, triple check the name of the coin your buying and the chain you're buying it on.
Copy link