A resident of the Scottish county of Lanarkshire has found himself in debt of £150,000 (nearly $190,000) after being the victim of cryptocurrency fraud. She is now forced to sell her house to avoid further financial problems.
The woman sought help from Advice Direct Scotland and local police, but the entities were unable to help her recover the funds.
"It's absolutely awful"
Jennifer decided to invest his money in a crypto system after seeing a dodgy Facebook ad featuring expert adviser Martin Lewis.
"Martin Lewis was exactly the reason I considered investing," she explained.
The British journalist is the creator of a site that gives advice on saving techniques. He has also been a strong advocate against fraudsters who have used his image in the past.
However, Jennifer believed in the legitimacy of the project and invested nearly $190,000 earlier this year through Revolut. After investing for ten days in a row, his bank started blocking some transfers, making him doubt that something was wrong.
Jennifer felt "devastated" realizing she was caught up in the ring of crypto scammers. She also said that her outstanding debt was so high that she had to sell her house to avoid further financial problems:
“I've never been in debt in my life, I've never taken out a loan in my life, I've never had a credit card bill. I really can't believe what happened to me, it's absolutely horrible. It took me a long time to get where I am, and the idea of losing this house, obviously for the sake of my children, is horrible.
The Scottish resident believes she has been the perfect target for criminals as she is "a very vulnerable person".
“Words would not describe how I feel right now. I feel sick every day,” she concluded.
Unfortunately for her, the local police and Advice Direct Scotland classified her case as a scam, so she was unable to recover the lost money.
Martin Lewis pointed out, saying the incident made him "sick". He also warned people never to invest in projects in his image:
“If you see me in an ad, it's a scam. I don't advertise, and I have the inglorious title of being the person whose face is used in more fraudulent advertisements than anyone else.
Scams are not location related
Unfortunately, Jennifer's case is just one of a series of scams that have recently taken place around the world. Another example is that of a Hong Kong woman who lost his savings worth nearly $900,000.
She fell prey to a fraudster who contacted her on Instagram and urged her to invest in digital assets with the promise of great returns.
When the woman attempted to withdraw some of her funds, she was asked to pay a certain sum. She even tried to borrow money from her daughter before realizing she had been scammed.
Hong Kong law enforcement officers described the case as "obtaining property by deception": a crime punishable by up to ten years in prison. However, authorities have yet to arrest any suspects.