New Zealand police issues fresh warning on crypto scams

New Zealand police have warned the public to be extra careful of cryptocurrency scams after one investor lost $320,000 to a fradulant scheme.

An official statement has appeared on the police’s website, and says that the company in question offered “extremely good returns” from a small investment.

It reads: “Canterbury Police are reminding people to be vigilant of online scams and think twice before sharing private information after a victim lost $320,000 of their life savings. The scam involved investments into cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin.”

UK investors were similarly warned by the FCA of a pair of crypto scams operating in the summer, telling the public “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”. This comes at a time when the number of crypto scams has risen sharply across the board.

“Members of the public should seek advice before making any online investments they are unsure of,” said Senior Sergeant Paul Reeves. “Scammers are extremely persistent and can seem very credible, as the are highly versed in their trade.”

The Deputy Head of New Zealand’s Reserve Bank, Geoff Bascand, revealed in July that the country could soon release its own form of digital currency, but also noted the challenges involved.

“A digital currency is easier and faster to distribute around the country than banknotes because it doesn’t need to be transported,” he said. “But there would be new infrastructure costs if a central bank digital currency were introduced.”