Police forces in Hong Kong have sounded the alarm after 11 Binance customers in Hong Kong were targeted in a wave of phishing scams sent via text messages.
Hong Kong Police to caution users of the scam in an October 9 post on its Facebook page dubbed “CyberDefender.”
“Recently, scammers posing as Binance have sent text messages claiming that users must click on the link in the message to verify their identity details before the deadline, otherwise their accounts will be deactivated.”
— Czechoslovakia Binance (@cz_binance) October 9, 2023
Once users clicked on the link and supposedly “verified” their personal data, the hackers then gained full access to their Binance accounts, where they proceeded to steal all assets in users’ wallets, police said.
According to the post, the phishing scheme saw 11 Binance customers in Hong Kong reporting combined losses of more than $446,000 (HK$3.5 million) in the past two weeks.
The police have asked any user who believes they have received a potentially fraudulent message to register suspicious messages in the “Fraud Prevention” section of its official website. website.
In addition, the police offered a link to a newly published list of verified virtual asset trading platforms, provided by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC).
Currently, only two cryptocurrency exchanges – HashKey and OSL – are fully licensed for retail investment purposes in Hong Kong.
Related: Hong Kong Police, Regulator Form Cryptocurrency Task Force as JPEX Saga Emerges
Founded in May, CyberDefender is a project launched by the Cybersecurity and Technological Crime Bureau of the Hong Kong Police Force, and aims to increase local citizens’ awareness of online security risks.
Hong Kong Police unveil ‘CyberDefender’ Metaverse platform to combat rising digital crimes. https://t.co/xyqa0iWQxf
— Cointelegraph (@Cointelegraph) May 28, 2023
Meanwhile, cryptocurrency investors in Hong Kong have been hit hard by scams and fraudulent activity in recent weeks, with the recent JPEX cryptocurrency exchange scandal swelling to losses estimated at $180 million, and more than 2,300 investors in Hong Kong filing complaints with local police.
JPEX was an unlicensed cryptocurrency exchange that allegedly lured Hong Kong residents with flashy advertisements and “SuspiciouslyHigh returns on lending products. The exchange raised fees for withdrawals from its platform on September 15, making the funds inaccessible to its users.
In the wake of the scandal, which has been described as the largest financial fraud ever to hit Hong Kong, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it would publish a list of fully licensed and “suspicious” cryptocurrency platforms in an effort to combat potential fraud.
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