Hello everyone. My name is Stanley, and I am a 60-year-old Canadian. Here, I want to share my personal experience of getting scammed by a professional team of International scammers (that’s not a compliment, by the way). I’d try my best not to sound like a grumpy older man, but I hope you can learn from my mistakes, especially those of my age who barely know about cryptocurrency.
First of all, I’m no IT expert, although I have worked with computers and the Internet for a while as part of my consultant associate job in the company. I knew the idea of being careful to invest my money online. That’s why I can say that the scammers planned and executed the scheme that stole my savings. They worked as a professional team with elaborate plans and field executions. Another context is, of course, I didn’t know a thing about cryptocurrency or crypto investments alike.
What I knew is that any investment must have its use cases. For example, stocks are backed up with real businesses that we can trust have sound fundamentals and growth. That’s why I have always been interested in finance industries and will invest in that field one day with my “401K”. Yes, I knew all that, but I didn’t realize the cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and how one could relate them with a viable investment. Unfortunately, I think the scammers knew these things and exploited them in my case; they outsmarted me.
I’m not defending myself here. I’m too tired for that. So here, let me show you how scammers do it.
If you think they forcefully made me a $300,000 crypto investment, you’re wrong. On the contrary, they were attentive and plain when they contacted me for the first time via a phone call back two months ago. The young man on the other side asked basic questions like “what do you know about investments today” “what instruments are you interested in” “what scale of investment do you want to make in the future” and other questions in a polite and professional tone. He also asked whether I knew anything about Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
In responding to his questions, I shared some appealing areas, but I show a strong interest in financial products. He ended without forcing me to make any deposit or pay for anything, only informing me that his colleague, an expert on finance-related investment, would contact me. I said, “Okay.”
Two days later, an older man(who sounded more senior) named Michael contacted me, and soon he demonstrated his knowledge about my interest in financial investment. He again pitched cryptocurrency investment backed with crypto finance products and how I can earn interest from it. Their products in the future would be able to provide loans and credits in the form of cryptocurrencies. That Cryptocurrency lender idea just clicked with me. This Michael also explained how they would proceed with investments, manage my funds, report, and other information in a language I can understand (and be convinced). He even allowed me to explore their website.
Without being pushy, Michael pitched two major upcoming agendas, the ICO and the IPO, which I should take part in and not miss. These already convinced me. The fraudsters set the campaigns on how the public can participate in the initial coin and public offerings. When I said, “Yes, I’m interested,” Michael stopped his pitch and said that Mary, the product manager, would contact me for more details.
Mary called me the same day and answered all questions I could ask with my limited knowledge of cryptocurrency. The projections and the whole story about crypto lending platforms were logical and made sense.
At this point, I didn’t realize that the layered approaches utilizing the power of the team had beaten my skepticism. Long story short, Mary asked whether I wanted to close the $300,000 investment that day, half for ICO and half for IPO. Yes, I closed the deal.
The same Mary guided me to open my account with my social security number on their website. Reliance Trading was the name of the company. Crypto investment is their project where the ICO was offered as blockchain stock and where they would launch crypto-based finance products. IPO itself was to back up the fundamentals of Reliance Trading company. They wanted to cover both sides, and I got it.
I only had a glance at the information about the company. I only knew that the company was operating abroad and that the website was accessible. Well, I might be over-expecting on their website, but I can access my account with no problem, so I didn’t get bothered. At that time, I could still reach Mary and some of the staff members until the date of the IPO. I even asked them where they got my number from, and they said I had completed individual surveys and put my number in the form. I just bought it.
When I made those investments, there was one thing that I usually did, but I didn’t. Maybe this is the puzzle I didn’t consult or discuss with anyone about investing a third of a million dollars in cryptocurrencies. But, honestly, it’s not because I didn’t want to hear their opinions but because I didn’t want them to be judgy. Even my son could research for me about the investment company, but I never asked him anyway.
They waited until the very last and ended up with millions of dollars in their pocket. On the IPO day, the website was still accessible, but I could no longer contact either Mary, Michael, or Paul. I thought the office might be hectic following the ICO and IPO events. Hour by hour, I kept trying to contact them as I wanted to know what my account should show on the day of the IPO. There must be something like a graph or price movement. I didn’t know anything. There was no response and that’s time I realized the red flags were flashing through my sight.
I know how to use the Internet and do some research, even though not as good as you are. I researched the company and saw no complaints or negative reviews. However, I saw a few activities and information about the company outside the website, which I should definitely identify as a significant red flag. It’s because they’re new!
Bitcoin investment scams are everywhere, but I never find these words in the same sentence with Reliance Trading. Only days after the expected IPO, I found many complaints about this company. Hundreds of people are victims of Reliance Trading and didn’t know How to report investment scams like this. Lesson learned, expensively.
Please don’t fall into investment scams like Forex trading or crypto investment scams like I did. You must do the research and consult with the expert or someone with relevant experience to the investment products you want to pick. Since this experience is costly, you should learn from it and wisely put your money in the right place.