“Consumers Urged to Beware of Deceptive ‘Bitcoin ATM’ Schemes, Says Drummond”


On March 19, 2024, Attorney General Gentner Drummond issued a warning to Oklahoma consumers about an increase in scams involving “Bitcoin ATMs.” These virtual currency kiosks, located in places like grocery stores and gas stations, allow individuals to purchase and send virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Tether. However, scammers are taking advantage of these kiosks and leaving victims with depleted bank accounts.

The scammers use various tactics, often targeting elderly individuals, to convince victims to withdraw money from their bank accounts and deposit it into the unregulated virtual currency kiosks. One method being used in Oklahoma involves convincing the victim that their bank is about to fail, and persuading them to empty their account and deposit the funds into the kiosk. Once the virtual currency is sent to the scammer’s crypto wallet, it is almost impossible to reverse the transaction.

Attorney General Drummond stressed the importance of staying vigilant against virtual currency scams and other banking scams. He advised never to pay anyone who demands an advance payment in cryptocurrency, as scammers often use this form of payment. Other types of scams to watch out for include romance scams, pig butchering scams, investment adviser scams, computer anti-virus protection scams, and impersonation scams where scammers claim to represent official agencies like the IRS or FBI.

To protect yourself from falling victim to banking scams, do not make any payments in the form of cryptocurrency, gift cards, or money transfers. If asked to withdraw cash from your bank account to convert it into cryptocurrency, do not provide any personal information and seek advice from a trusted friend or relative. If you believe you have been a victim of a banking scam, contact the Office of the Oklahoma Attorney General at [email protected] or 1-833-681-1895.

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