Bitcoin trading has gone up this year as bulls have returned to the market with renewed interest in the leading cryptocurrency. The cryptocurrency has surged past $10,000 this year, and the price rise seems to be continuing into the later parts of the year.
Bitcoin Not Living Up To its Full Potential Due To Negative Perception
Despite the run that Bitcoin is on, researchers suggest that the crypto asset is not growing at the rate that it actually should be. Many people associate cryptocurrencies with scams, theft, and fraud, and this negative perception is hampering the advancement of Bitcoin. Several governments and regulators have created unfriendly policies for the crypto industry because of the fears that citizens within their jurisdictions will fall victim to crypto related scams. Billions of dollars have been lost to scammers who used cryptocurrency schemes, and the effects of these have been detrimental to the progress of Bitcoin.
QR Code Scams on the Rise
Recent research suggests that 80% of the results that come up when one searches for a “Bitcoin QR generator” lead to a fraudulent website. QR code generators are used by Bitcoin traders to create QR codes for wallet addresses to enable easy and quick transfer of cryptocurrency from one holder to another. However, most of the code generators that are popping up on Google give a user a QR code which leads to a Bitcoin wallet address of a scammer, and several people have lost their funds to this scam.
According to Tal Be’ery from ZenGo, the fake websites create a QR code that you which carries an address belonging to the scammers instead of the address requested by a user. All payments made end up in the scammers’ wallet. Be’ery went on to say that the scammers use a blockchain explorer API to generate the QR code for their address.
The research available shows that over $20,000 has been lost to QR scams in recent times, and researchers say that this figure is just the tip of the iceberg. The chances are high that there are more people who have lost their Bitcoin to scammers who use this method. These scammers are constantly changing the QR codes and the address they use, which makes it difficult to identify them and blacklist the addresses.
Be’ery said that QR are not humanly readable, and this makes it easy for scammers to use them to defraud crypto users. Over the first six months of 2019, it is estimated that the total amount of cryptocurrency stolen by scammers and hackers is worth over $4 billion. Most of the stolen loot was accessed directly from crypto exchanges by hackers, but scams also contributed significantly to this amount.