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Cryptocurrency is an electronic form of money which has been on the rise for several years. The king of all cryptocurrency (as of now) is Bitcoin. ­At its height, one Bitcoin was worth almost $20 thousand. Well, scammers want a piece of this action and scams involving Bitcoin are becoming more popular. 

There are a few reasons why scammers would prefer to be paid in Bitcoin. First, the value of cryptocurrency fluctuates, like a stock. This gives the cryptocurrency the ability to grow in value. Second, cryptocurrency is completely digital, which affords the scammer almost complete privacy.

Scams Which May Ask You To Pay With Bitcoin

1. Chain Letter Scams. In this scam you will be asked to give money and then forward on to your friends or family. As the letter keeps getting forwarded and more people donate, you are promised that you will make more and more money. You’re almost assuredly throwing your money away with zero return on that investment. Many of these chain letter scams will ask you to pay in Bitcoin. Elderly individuals need to be especially careful with scams of this nature. 

2. Blackmail. You may receive a message from someone indicating that they have damaging information about you which will be released unless you pay up with Bitcoin. Oftentimes they will put as much pressure on you as possible to get you to pay quickly. Report these types of scams to the police, Federal Trade Commission and FBI. These types of scams fall under extortion and can be criminally prosecuted.

3. Business Investment Scams. One rule of thumb: If someone guarantees you will make money, it’s a scam. It’s impossible to guarantee you will make money because an investment is always a bit of a gamble. If someone offers you the ability to invest in a business with a guarantee of making money in return, don’t give them a dime – in Bitcoin or any kind of currency. 

Cryptocurrency may be the way of the future, but it is already the way of today for some scammers. Scams involving Bitcoin are becoming more popular, so keep your eyes open. 

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