Scammers steal $1.2M in cryptocurrency from Bloomfield Township man

Bloomfield Township Police are urging people to look out for scammers who are finding new ways to steal your money after they were able to swipe over $1 million in cryptocurrency.

According to police, they have never seen so many fraud cases as they are right now. In particular, there was one where a man was scammed out of $1.2 million in crypto.

“Fraud is the fastest growing crime in the country and its so hard to trace,” said Bloomfield Township Police Community Relations Officer Nick Soley.

Solely said the chances of that money getting returned is virtually nothing.

“That money has already been transferred overseas we believe to India,” he said.

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The victim had his phone hacked,  specifically, his sim card which stores all of your phone’s data. Once they got into his sim card, it gave the scammers access to his banking apps.

“He opened his phone day and realized half of a million had been taken in cryptocurrency. He called his phone provider and the provider told him that a SIM swap was initiated on his phone,” Soley said.

That all happened without the victim even knowing but this isn’t the only scam Soley said they’re seeing right now.

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In other cases, some scammers want to put in the time by phone to hook you.  

“Many times they play a scare tactic I need you to do this now or else. And that gets people,” he said.

In one case, a landlord got a call that his homes were behind on DTE bills and asked for $2,000 in Target gift cards to make it right. And he did it!

“If any company reaches out to you and says you need to pay us in a gift card it’s most likely a scam,” Soley said.

The third major scam was an elderly woman who thought she was talking to a family friend on Facebook Messenger. When he started asking for cash, of course she wanted to help. So she packaged up $40,000 in cash and shipped it to Texas. 

She found out the hard way this was no family friend. It was a scammer who stole her cash.

Soley said the best thing we can do is enable things that come standard on almost all of our secure apps that have our bank or credit card information stored.

“If we can lock down with passwords, make sure we are getting notifications, two-factor notifications are awesome if you have it,” Soley said. “Every time as little as a cent is taken out of your account you’re getting the text alert so at least we can catch it early  .”


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