Protecting yourself from fake crypto exchanges
What is a fake crypto exchange?
A fake crypto exchange is a website or platform that claims to be a legitimate cryptocurrency exchange, but is actually a scam. These fake exchanges often have convincing-looking websites and may even offer services like trading, deposits, and withdrawals. However, they are not legitimate exchanges and are designed to steal your money or personal information.
How to spot a fake crypto exchange?
The best way to spot a fake crypto exchange is to do your research. Before signing up for any exchange, make sure to read reviews and check out the exchange’s website.
Check the website’s age
Visit https://whois.domaintools.com/ and enter the website address to determine the website’s age. Although recently registered domains may not indicate a scam, when combined with other warning signs, they may be regarded as a cause for concern.
Be sure to take note of the expiration date as well. Legitimate exchanges typically pay for a domain registration period of 10 years or more, whereas fraudulent ones usually only register for a period of 1 or 2 years.
Check the social media presence
If a cryptocurrency exchange website does not feature social media icons that lead to their corresponding social media pages, it should be considered another red flag, as even new legitimate exchanges usually have a significant following on social media.
Overall website quality
Developing and testing a web platform, particularly one that handles consumer finances, requires a significant amount of human resources. It is important to thoroughly examine any websites that are suspected of being problematic, looking out for broken links, low-quality images and content, misspelled words, and any other elements that may appear out of place.
Promises and claims
It’s crucial to be vigilant about the claims made on any exchange. If you come across any promises of investment returns on their website, it could be a clear indication that the exchange is a scam, designed solely to lure you into depositing your cryptocurrency into the scammer’s wallet.
Check the support options
Reputable exchanges will typically provide comprehensive support options for both new and existing clients. Keep an eye out for phone numbers, corporate email addresses, or well-crafted FAQ sections as these are good indicators of a legitimate exchange.
The corporate address
If an exchange is genuine, it should be relatively easy to locate the company’s physical address. Navigate to the “contact us” or “about us” section and see if you can find the business’s address. Once you have the address, use Google Maps to conduct some research. If you see a residential area appearing on the map, this is often an indication of a scam.
When it comes to crypto exchange companies, it is crucial to conduct proper due diligence. Always bear in mind that if a fraudulent exchange manages to receive your cryptocurrency deposit, there may be no means of retrieving it.