The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) has issued a consumer protection alert addressing the “alleged cryptocurrency exchange” known as Eucoinotrade.
At least one person may have fallen victim to what appears to be “advanced fee fraud,” per the report. This is a confidence scheme that involves soliciting large sum payments for fees under the guise that they’re needed to release supposed earnings.
According to the DFI, “after investing 5 or 6 times, for a total of nearly $50,000, the investor’s Eucoinotrade account purportedly grew to over $414,000.” However, the problems allegedly began when the investor attempted to cash out.
Initially, “customer service” claimed that the investor’s gains required them to upgrade their account to “elite status” and demanded the investor pay “software upgrade” fees in the amount of $40,000.
“Customer service” then agreed to waive the $40,000 fee but insisted the investor would still need to pay a $14,000 processing fee to access their money. Once that fee was obtained, the investor was then solicited for another $9,400 fee called an “IRS compulsory fee” — something the Washington DFI says doesn’t exist.
The alert goes on to state that, per the organization’s research, the Eucoinotrade website throws up several potential red flags:
- It claims to be registered in Ireland, but the alleged exchange’s business ID appears to refer to a different company altogether;
- The website’s FAQ states that it still accepts Payza, a service that was shut down in 2018 ahead of its founders pleading guilty to conspiring to launder money and operating an internet-based unlicensed money service business; a
- The website appears to be built with a template shared by hundreds of other questionable sites.
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The Ecoinotrade site claims to offer 150% daily profit on user accounts with investment minimums ranging from $1,000 to $150,000 using a “binary algorithm.” However, no research or company profile information appeared on the website.
Cointelegraph asked Ecoinotrade about the alert but did not receive an immediate response. This story will be updated should it respond.