U.S. Marshals Issue Warning Over New Bitcoin Impersonation Scam

Michael LaVere
  • The US Marshals Service issued a warning over a new scam involving cryptocurrency.
  • "Spoofers" are impersonating government authorities over the phone and demanding payments in bitcoin. 

The United States Marshals Service, a federal law enforcement agency, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have issued a warning over bitcoin scammers pretending to be government employees. 

According to an update, “spoofers” are using government phone numbers and employee names in order to demand payments from unsuspecting victims in the form of crypto and bitcoin ATMs. 

The official notice warns of several “nationwide imposter scams” involving individuals claiming to be US marshals, court officers or other members of law enforcement and demanding the payment of a fine in the form of crypto. 

The report continues, 

During these calls, scammers attempt to collect a fine in lieu of arrest for failing to report for jury duty or other offenses. They then tell victims they can avoid arrest by purchasing a prepaid debit card such as a Green Dot card or gift card and read the card number over the phone to satisfy the fine or by depositing cash into bitcoin ATMs.

The U.S. Marshals Service is urging affected individuals to report the calls to their local FBI office and to file a consumer complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com

Morgan Creek Digital's Anthony Pompliano Explains Why He Is So Bullish on Bitcoin

Siamak Masnavi

On Tuesday (February 25), Anthony Pompliano (aka "Pomp"), a co-founder of crypto-focused asset management firm Morgan Creek Digital Assets, gave an interview -- to CNN's Julia Chatterley -- during which he extolled the virtues of Bitcoin.

Pomp focused on two main aspects of Bitcoin:

1. Bitcoin's Proof-of-Work (PoW) Consensus Mechanism and Its Energy Costs

He told Chatterley that Bitcoin is "the most seure computing network" in the world, and "it is going to take electricity or power consumption in order to power that security."

However, he said we don't need to get too alarmed by this since Bitcoin miners are "financially incentivized" to "find the cheapest power sources" because "that's how they make money."

Then, he pointed out that the cheapest form of energy is renewable energy, and so that is what they will try to use to power their mining hardware. In fact, he said that based on the studies he has seen, 60 to 80 percent of the energy being used is renewable.

2. Bitcoin's Store of Value Use Case 

"I think that store of value is really important. You have to have store value before you can have medium of exchange. 

"The store of value comes down to two things. One is security -- it can't disappear, it can't be hacked, etc.; and Bitcoin being the most secure computing network in the world, it is very secure...

"When it comes to price, what you want to see is, over long periods of time, either you're preserving your wealth, so the price stays flat, or it continues to increase.

"The monetary policy of Bitcoin relies on one thing: supply and demand economics -- artificially capped supply, demand increases, price will go up in U.S. dollar terms. And so, again, if you zoom out, over last decade, it's the best performing asset, over the last 12 months, up 150%, in the last you know what six weeks or so, it's up 30% or so.

"It's continuing to do exactly what it's kind of built to do. Now, there's high volatility on an intraday basis... but again people who put their wealth... in Bitcoin have been rewarded very well with this store of wealth thesis. And so we tend to think that the non-correlation with traditional assets will continue to be a valuable kind of aspect of Bitcoin."

Other Bitcoin-Related Topics

Pomp also responded to legendary billionaire investor Warren Buffett's most recent criticisms of Bitcoin by saying that although Buffett is "one of the best investors of all time," when it comes to technology, there are "better people to listen to." 

Finally, with regard to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), here is what he had to say:

"These central back digital currencies are all coming, and really what I think people need to understand is all of the central back digital currencies are simply taking the existing monetary policy and changing the technology form factor.

"What Bitcoin does is it actually is a different monetary policy. It's not a fiat inflationary type model, and so ultimately we're going to have as a competition of currencies, but it's not going to be a competition on technology...

"We're going to have a competition of monetary policy... We believe that the Bitcoin monetary policy is superior to central bank monetary policies, and ultimately Bitcoin will be the winner, and will be the next global reserve currency."