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$255M Lost in Crypto-Related Investment Scams Last Year

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The United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has conveyed that common investment scams’ costs — including crypto-related ones — reached more than £197 million ($255 million) last year.

The agency officially reported the figures in an official press release published on February 6.

According to statistics from the FCA call center, the usual reported scams involved unsanctioned investments in shares and bonds, foreign exchange markets and cryptocurrencies. Each victim lost an average of £29,000 or $37,000, with such kinds of illicit investments comprising a total of 4,996 reported cases and making up 85 percent of the total number of scam reports last year.

In a recent warning to investors, the FCA emphasized that investors should be extra wary of making investments during the first quarter, which is strongly thought of as the peak investment season before the end of the tax year.

The financial watchdog also stressed that the spread of investment scams is moving on from conventional cold calls to online operations. According to the FCA, scammers have made use of online sources 9 percent more than in 2017, getting in touch with people through emails and professional looking websites, as well as through social media sites like Facebook and Instagram.

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