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A Philadelphia specialist falls victim to a $450,000 crypto romance scam.

Such incidents underscore the need for caution and awareness in the digital environment, especially in the area of cryptocurrency-related investments and transactions.

Date: 2024-02-26 Author: Marek Stiller
A Philadelphia specialist falls victim to a $450,000 crypto romance scam.

Shreya Datta, a 37-year-old technology professional from Philadelphia, fell victim to a cryptocurrency scam that left her financially ruined. Fraudsters use false tactics to gain the trust of victims and get them to invest in fake cryptocurrencies, part of a crime known as “pig slaughter.”

France24 reports that the scam targeting Datta began on the dating app Hinge, where she met“Ancel,” a charming French wine merchant who allegedly lives in Philadelphia. The couple quickly moved on to WhatsApp, where they exchanged selfies, flirtatious messages with emoticons and even short video calls. Datta was captivated by Ancel’s charisma and believed she had found a real connection in a wide range of online relationships.

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As their virtual relationship deepened, Ancel began to share his dreams of early retirement and financial success through investing in cryptocurrencies.

He boosted her confidence and willingness to invest when he introduced Datta to a cryptocurrency trading app that seemed legitimate . In addition, he showed her screenshots of profitable trades.

Through an effective and convincing strategy, Ancel convinced the victim to take out loans, convert her savings into cryptocurrency and even liquidate her retirement fund. By March, Datta had invested nearly $450,000, and her investment appeared on paper to be more than double what it actually was.

However, when she tried to get the money, the app demanded payment of a personal “tax,” which raised concerns. Datta’s brother decided to investigate and discovered that the photos Ancel had sent actually depicted the German influencer.

Datta was emotionally devastated after the aftermath of the scam. Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) made it difficult for her to sleep, eat and function normally. The feeling that all her money had been lost and that she had been victimized by a heartless scammerwas very traumatic for her.

Cryptocurrency romance scams like the one Datta experienced have become alarmingly common. The FBI ‘s Internet Crime Complaint Center reported more than 40,000 cases of cryptocurrency-related fraud, including pig slaughter, which caused losses of more than $3.5 billion in 2023.

The reports go to law enforcement agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, but recovering the money is often difficult, if not impossible. People who seek help from fake recovery agents may also be involved in additional scams.

As reported, Santa Clara, California Deputy District Attorney Erin West receives an average of five to six emails from people who have fallen victim to pig cutting.

We receive five to six emails a day from people who have been victims of pig slaughter. This is not even the highest amount of money that a single victim has lost as a result of this scam; the most recent victim lost $5 million.

To make matters worse, the stolen money is being transferred to international criminal organizations in Burma and Cambodia. Trafficking victims are used as virtual slaves in pig slaughter scams.

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Marek Stiller
Marek Stiller
Founder of the "Cryptocurrency for Beginners" channel on YouTube. He collaborates with Łukasz to form the Arena Trading group, while at the same time being passionate about blockchain technology. His knowledge and experience in the cryptocurrency industry help beginner investors better understand this dynamic market.
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