The Hong Kong Police Force said it received 1,503 online investment scam complaints over the first 10 months of last year, with 69% related to cryptocurrencies, public broadcaster RTHK reported on Tuesday, citing a police press release.
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- Hong Kong lost a total of over HK$770 million (US$98 million) to online scams in the first 10 months of last year, which is more than double the amount recorded over the same period in 2021.
- Among the 1,503 online investment scams reported over the period, 1,035 were related to cryptocurrencies, which took up 69% of the total. A single victim lost as much as HK$15 million in a cryptocurrency scam, according to the police.
- The Hong Kong police reminded residents that customer service agents at cryptocurrency exchanges do not ask clients to transfer money to private bank accounts.
- Hong Kong has been repositioning itself as a global digital asset hub by seeking to ease cryptocurrency investing restrictions on the retail sector and drafting regulations for licensed crypto exchanges.
- In September 2022, Hong Kong Police launched an anti-scam application service, Scameter, where users can search for information such as names and phone numbers related to suspicious calls and messages.
- In December 2022, policed arrested two top executives at a Hong-Kong-based defunct crypto exchange, AAX, on suspected involvement with a cryptocurrency fraud.
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