UK School Teacher Falls For Fake 'Elon Musk' Bitcoin Scam, Loses Savings Of Rs 9 Lakh

The victim said she lost the money she had saved for a new home; now, she has come forward to warn others not to commit a similar mistake

UK School Teacher Falls For Fake 'Elon Musk' Bitcoin Scam, Loses Savings Of Rs 9 Lakh

Scammers are adapting to the changing, tech-driven world and finding new ways to defraud people of their hard-earned money. In the latest case to surface, online scammers duped a cryptocurrency investor of £9,000 (roughly Rs 9.28 lakh) using the name of billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk. The Tesla and SpaceX CEO has repeatedly supported Dogecoin, a meme currency, on his social media accounts and once even said crypto could be the world's future currency. Now, the victim of the fraud has come forward to warn others to not commit the same mistake she did.

Julie Bushnell said she lost the money she had saved for a new home after falling for a Bitcoin fraud that used a fake story that featured Mr Musk. The BBC reported that the fraudsters created a website that appeared similar to its own BBC News website to add authenticity to the fake news item. It also shared a screenshot of the fake report.

Bushnell told the British TV network that she felt ashamed and embarrassed after falling for the fraud. She said she thinks about it “every minute of every day”.

Detailing what had happened, the Brighton teacher said she paid £9,000 after reading a news on a website that resembled BBC News and claimed that Mr Musk would pay back double the amount of any Bitcoin deposit. When no money came, she realised she had been conned.

Bushnell, who has reported the incident to the authorities, said it has affected her massively and she wished she could go back in time and not make “those couple of clicks”. She slammed the scammers for robbing her of her “dignity, self-respect, self-worth and strength” and said she now wants to raise awareness about such scams.

The fake website was still active and efforts were on to close it down.

In recent months, Mr Musk has often spoken about Dogecoin but rarely about Bitcoin. A day ago, the Tesla CEO said the electric vehicle manufacturer was suspending purchases with Bitcoin, triggering a slide in the digital currency. In a Twitter post on Wednesday, Mr Musk cited concerns about the “rapidly increasing use of fossil fuels for Bitcoin mining and transactions”, while signaling that Tesla might accept other cryptocurrencies if they are much less energy-intensive.

Coming back to such cryptocurrency scams, this won't be the last time where fraudsters will use professional-looking websites and promise high returns. So, people must be wary before investing their life's savings in such scams typically promising high returns and carried out through bogus online trading platforms.

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