South Korean Crypto Scammers Target Chat App Users: Police Warning

South Korean Crypto Scammers Target Chat App Users: Police Warning

Recently, South Korean police have issued a warning regarding the targeting of chat app users by crypto scammers on trading- and investment-themed channels. According to reports from News1 and Daejon Ilbo, the Sejong South Police Station is currently investigating multiple cases stemming from these fraudulent activities. It has been disclosed that approximately 20 reports have been received from deceived citizens in the city who fell victim to false or exaggerated claims in so-called investment “reading rooms.”

South Korea is known for having a large and highly active retail crypto market. This market attracts investors who gather online in chat app channels, often referred to as “reading rooms.” Platforms such as Telegram and KakaoTalk’s Open Chat feature are commonly used by these investors to exchange information and tips. Interestingly, there are hundreds of crypto-themed chat rooms on KakaoTalk alone, with some rooms having up to 1,500 members. These rooms cater to a variety of topics, from discussions on popular cryptocurrencies like BTC to obscure tokens and trading platforms.

Upon exploring some of these chat rooms, it becomes evident that there are individuals posing as expert traders offering “guaranteed monthly gains” and other enticing promises. In some cases, suspicious messages from potential scammers are swiftly moderated or deleted by channel admins to protect members from falling victim to these scams. The allure of quick profits and insider trading secrets has led many individuals to join these investment reading rooms after encountering misleading advertisements on platforms like YouTube.

Law enforcement officials have issued a stark warning to individuals participating in these reading rooms, emphasizing that there is no such thing as a risk-free financial investment with guaranteed high returns. Scammers operating in these channels often lure victims with free services before encouraging them to join paid VIP rooms and deposit significant amounts of money on unlicensed exchanges. Unfortunately, many individuals have been left empty-handed as these scammers vanish or refuse to return the invested funds, highlighting the pervasive risks associated with engaging in these activities.

In a concerning development, police in Busan revealed that they had dismantled a $32 million chat app-based crypto scam ring operated by multiple groups of violent gangsters. These criminal syndicates set up crypto reading room sites on chat platforms, ultimately defrauding hundreds of unsuspecting individuals across the country. The police made a total of 87 arrests in connection with this scam ring, underscoring the severity of these fraudulent activities and the need for heightened vigilance among crypto investors in South Korea.

Overall, the prevalence of crypto scams targeting chat app users in South Korea underscores the importance of exercising caution and skepticism when participating in online investment communities. As the authorities continue to crack down on fraudulent schemes, individuals are advised to conduct thorough research, verify the legitimacy of investment opportunities, and seek guidance from reputable sources before committing their funds to avoid falling victim to financial exploitation.


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