Cryptocurrency Scam Rises in Northwest Arkansas, FBI Warns Citizens

FBI officials in Arkansas say cybercriminals have started targeting victims in a scam that involves home computers or threatened breach of social security accounts and cryptocurrency.

“We are seeing an uptick in this sophisticated play on an old scam,” Kevin Corlew, a supervisory special agent with the FBI, said in an interview.

 Curlew said that once the scammers have a victim online, they are told an official form such as Social Security will call them. The scammers then spoof a number, making it appear from the Social Security Administration, and say to the victim they need to close all the bank accounts and transfer the money to bitcoin.

Curlew said the growing popularity of cryptocurrency made it almost inevitable people involved in this kind of criminal activity would incorporate into the scams.

Local law enforcement agencies said they obtain reports of similar schemes. But the application of cryptocurrency is new. As per Sgt, the Fayetteville Police Department has received at least one such report. Anthony Murphy, public information officer for the department.

Murphy said the department advises people to be cautious of anyone who contacts them by phone claiming to be from a government agency and asking them to offer information on money.

Per the FBI’s information, criminals who are offering fraudulent cryptocurrency investment services have become common enough to prompt the organization to issue a warning to investors. 

According to the FBI, the bureau has identified at least 244 victims of this kind of fraud with losses of more than US$ 42.7 million.

Curlew said anyone seeking more information or demanding to file a complaint can go to the FBI’s Internet crime complaint Centre at or call the Little Rock Office at (501) 221-9100.