According to information from Hong Kong law enforcement, scammers were able to steal $446,835 from 11 Binance accounts during the last two weeks. These scammers used phishing techniques, tricking wallet owners into clicking on fake identity verification links via text messages. For increased protection, Hong Kong police officials highly advise investors to use authorised cryptocurrency trading platforms in the region. Only two platforms, Hash Blockchain Limited and OSL Digital Securities Limited, now have operating licences.
In the past two weeks, there have been numerous phishing attempts on Binance accounts, leading to Hong Kong authorities filing numerous cases and issuing a cautionary note to users. These occurrences occur amid a flurry of crypto-related assaults, including hacks and DNS attacks, with well-known people like billionaire Mark Cuban being victims of them.
Galxe and Balancer DNS assaults have also shown weaknesses in a number of crypto businesses, specifically in subdomain/domain hijacking.
Users of Binance in Hong Kong have collectively lost HK$3.5 million ($446,835 at the current exchange rate). The 11 victims were tricked, according to local officials, by phishing texts that seemed to be from Binance, the largest cryptocurrency trading platform in the world by trade volume.
In particular, the messages asked account holders to click the offered link as soon as possible to prove their identity. The fake emails warned that failing to cooperate would result in the cancellation of their accounts, according to the police investigation. By clicking the links, the offender was able to get users’ passwords and other personal information, which they then used to access their accounts and steal virtual goods.
The CyberDefender Facebook page of the Hong Kong police has posted a warning, stressing the significance of staying alert to such attacks.
Hong Kong law enforcement advises users to think about utilising authorized cryptocurrency exchanges.
The Hong Kong police strongly advise people to choose authorised cryptocurrency exchanges in light of recent events, citing improved security procedures. It’s important to note that only two cryptocurrency trading platforms, OSL Digital Securities Limited and Hash Blockchain Limited, have been granted licences to serve Hong Kong’s retail customers since the Securities and Futures Commission implemented new virtual asset regulations on June 1.
In order to lower the risk of hacking assaults, authorities have also promoted the usage of offline cold wallets, such as external storage devices, when working with sizable sums of virtual assets. The Hong Kong police are recommending citizens to use the force’s Scameter search engine, which is publicly accessible on the CyberDefender website, as a precaution. By examining information on dubious site addresses, emails, platform usernames, bank accounts, and mobile phone numbers or IP addresses, this program helps users spot potential scams.
IDuring the global economic uncertainty, the Hong Kong police handled approximately 20,000 fraud cases in the first half (H1) of 2023, a 52% increase from the numbers revealed in the first half of 2022. The total losses for 2023 have increased by 28% from the HK$2.1 billion (about $268.17 million) recorded in 2022 to HK$2.69 billion (around $345.5 million).