Retrieving Lost Bitcoin And Other Crypto

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Retrieving Lost Bitcoin And Other Crypto

As more and more people get involved with cryptocurrencies, the number of scams continues to increase. These criminals are taking advantage of a market which is relatively new and often misunderstood. This, coupled with the significant value held in major cryptocurrencies make it a potentially lucrative and easy target. Fortunately, there now is a solution for those who have their Bitcoin stolen.

What You Need to Know About Cryptocurrency Scams

Cryptocurrency Scams

Scams in the age of Blockchain are as varied and creative as ever. Victims range from naive individuals to some of the world’s largest cryptocurrencies. In 2019 alone, an estimated $4.26 billion were stolen across the industry. The two most notable attacks targetted Binance and BITPoint, where a combined total of $68 million were taken.

Tackling cryptocurrency scams has been challenging, not least because these currencies have no jurisdictions or central authority which controls them. Until recently, if you lost Bitcoin wallets or have Bitcoin stolen, the chances of a successful crypto recovery were unlikely at best.

However, crime-fighting organisations and private tech companies have started to develop ways to shift the odds closer to the victim’s favour. In one particular crime bust in 2019, six people were arrested across Europe after having stolen $27 million through a fake website they had set up.

How Bitcoin Scams Work

There are many different types of Bitcoin scams out there. Although the way they operate varies, their essential characteristics are identical. In a cryptocurrency scam, the individual behind the scam dupes an unsuspecting victim. As a result, the victim has his or her Bitcoin stolen.

Types of Crypto Scams

One of the more popular types of crypto scams is fake websites. Designed to look identical to reputable websites, these websites are designed to steal your username and password, allowing the scammer to login to your legitimate account and take your funds. To get you to visit such websites, criminals use a host of tricks, such as incorporating a link in an email or hacking a friend’s phone and sending SMS recommending the website.

To protect yourself from fake websites you should always check that the website you are visiting has a lock icon near the address bar. In addition, you should always type the address directly rather than clicking on a link, since although a link might show the correct address, it can be redirected to a fake website.

Another common type of scam is a fake mobile application. It operates similarly to a fake website, but oftentimes includes logos which resemble, but are not identical to the original. By implementing such minor changes, the apps stay on Google Play or the iOS store for longer without being removed.

The number of Ponzi schemes promising high and guaranteed returns by investing in cryptocurrencies is also a type of scam. Very often, such service providers utilise flashy words, such as Artificial Intelligence to dupe unsuspecting investors. To encourage these investors to recommend the service to their friends, the scammer might even fulfil initial repayments, but before long, the Ponzi scheme gets too big to manage.

More complex scams can be seen with Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). Whilst these are oftentimes legitimate investment opportunities, fake ICOs dupe investors into buying into a fake cryptocurrency. In 2018 alone, over 1,000 ICOs collapsed, although part of this number is also due to genuine projects which failed.

Criminals are increasingly seeking new ways to steal Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies using technology. Cryptojacking is one such example, where a computer is infected and mines a cryptocurrency for the hacker. These attacks are the hardest to prevent or to stop since they oftentimes elude traditional firewalls.

Warning Signs of Bitcoin Scams

Although scams are a relatively new branch of the criminal enterprise, preventing Bitcoin from being stolen is oftentimes a matter of common sense and practicality. To protect yourself from becoming the next victim, you should consider the following:

  • Prevent malware – The best way to prevent malware is not to download it. If you receive an email with an attachment you were not expecting, treat is as suspicious, even if the sender is someone you recognise. Be careful of visiting fake websites or downloading fake Bitcoin wallets. Always choose reputable cryptocurrency wallets.
  • Beware of phishing – Phishing websites encourage you to provide sensitive information, such as your wallet’s private key, to check whether it has been hacked. Such services are fake and only serve to obtain your details.
  • Not all that shines is gold – Ponzi scheme operators are successful as they prey on an individual’s greed and fear of missing out. Don’t trust cryptocurrency-based investments with a guaranteed return, especially if the profit is substantial. No investor bot can get it right often enough to guarantee results.

Retrieving Bitcoin and Other Cryptos

If you happen to become a victim of a scam which results in the loss of Bitcoin or Altcoins, there is something you can do.

MyChargeBack

MyChargeBack
Screenshots are shown for illustration purposes only. Actual product may vary.

MyChargeBack is a company which is dedicated to helping you retrieve lost Bitcoin.  This tech business makes use of various technologies and crime-fighting tactics to search for and oftentimes recover digital currencies. To date, it has already helped thousands of people around the world.

The company offers another service to those who had Bitcoin stolen. MyChargeBack provides a detailed report about the incident, to be used in court and other official business, such as insurance claims. Just like using an accountant to help you file your taxes, or seeking a lawyer for a court case, MyChargeBack is the professional you need when cryptocurrencies get stolen.

What is a ChargeBack?

Chargeback is a term commonly associated with credit cards. In fact, there are two types of chargebacks; one is fraud-related and the other is related to service provided.

Fraud Chargebacks

As its name suggests, this is a chargeback claim based on suspected fraudulent activity. Generally, this chargeback is very easy to prove and therefore, claim. If someone steals your credit card and starts making purchases, all you need to do is report the theft and the bank which provides you with the card should credit you the funds.

Another possible fraud chargeback takes place when you order something online and the item is not delivered or is different from what was advertised. In such cases, you would first start by getting in touch with the merchant, but if this was actually a scam and not a mistake, the merchant might not reply to you. If you are not able to amicably solve the issue with the merchant then you would proceed with a fraud-related chargeback.

Service Chargeback

The service-related chargeback tends to be more difficult to prove, and therefore claim. In such a claim, proving wrongdoing is more complicated, since you are admitting to authorising the purchase of a service. The problem arises if the exact service you agreed upon was not provided.

Service chargebacks are oftentimes challenges by service providers. Documents, such as contracts or agreements can be used to justify the delivery of a service, and your agreement to the business relationship. Scammers normally design these contracts to be airtight, protecting them whilst exposing you to all the risk.

The Chargeback Process

No matter whether you use Visa, Mastercard, American Express or practically any other debit or credit card, the chargeback process is practically identical. The main difference is the length of time where you can begin a chargeback claim.

  • Visa and Mastercard – 120 days from date of purchase which can be extended to 540 days or more in certain cases
  • American Express – no limit from the date of purchase

In order to initiate a chargeback claim, the cardholder needs to submit a claim with the bank which issued the card (the issuer). If the bank accepts grounds for a claim it will contact the merchant’s bank (the acquirer) through the card scheme’s (Visa / Mastercard / AMEX) dispute resolution scheme. The merchant is informed by the acquirer about the claim, and the claimed funds are normally blocked in the account.

Depending on the card scheme, the merchant has up to 45 days to counter any chargeback claim. He/she can do this by providing documents or other information which rebuts the grounds of the claim. These documents are reviewed by the issuer which may or may not involve the cardholder. The issuer can then decided to drop the claim or proceed to arbitration.

The arbitrators used in arbitration are independent individuals employed by the card schemes. Their decision is final with limited opportunities for an appeal. Oftentimes, it is the issuing or acquiring bank which loses the dispute which pays for the arbitration.

The chargeback process can last up to six months and the result can be far from certain. MyChargeBack can help cardholders compile detailed and just grounds for a claim, for you to provide to your bank. In addition, their experienced recovery agents can join you in conference calls or help you with emails about your claim with a point-by-point reply.

Chargebacks with MyChargeBack

MyChargeBack can facilitate and remove the stress of claiming a chargeback. Their program is catered to deal with claims of $5,000 or more. Within one day of registering your request with the company, a team will send you an email which will include a request for documents and other information. Depending on the nature of the claim, documents could include bank statements, receipts, and screenshots.

The email will be followed up a few days later by a call, where a MyChargeBack team member can assist you to obtain the required documents and details.

Once provided with all the necessary information, the team at MyChargeBack will compile it and prepare a Dispute Report. You should use this report to formally file a chargeback claim. If the bank requests a meeting, a MyChargeback delegate can join you in a call to help you answer any questions. Should the merchant counter your claim, MyChargeBack will prepare a response and proceed to request arbitration. Depending on the case, it might also escalate a claim to a government regulator on your behalf.

MyChargeBack Reviews

MyChargeBack Reviews
Image Source: TrustPilot

Online reviews of the services offered by MyChargeBack are generally very good or excellent. On TrustPilot, the company scored a score of great, with almost 200 reviews. Many individuals have stated that the company fulfils its obligations in a timely manner, and in many cases, has helped them recover their funds. In addition, reviews applaud their affordable service and courteous and professional staff. Most importantly, the majority of reviewers would recommend MyChargeBack to others.

Concluding Thoughts

By taking the precautions listed in this guide you are less likely to become a victim of fraud. However, the possibility remains. If you do feel cheated it is important to know that services, such as those offered by MyChargeBack are here to help you.

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