More and more people are becoming interested in NFTs. Not surprising, because everyone is talking about it these days. Where there are many newcomers to the internet, unfortunately, many scammers can also be found. This is because the newcomers often do not yet know exactly what they are doing and are therefore relatively easy to ‘catch’.
It is therefore important that you do good research before you actually start with non-fungible tokens (NFT). Part of this research is of course also that you try to find out in what ways you can be scammed so that you can prevent this.
We, at NFT HotShot, think it is important that we help you in this process. That’s why today this blog: the most common NFT scams. So, in this blog, we will discuss different forms of NFT scams that are common, as well as how to spot them. And when you can recognize them, you can of course (in most cases) avoid being scammed.
So this blog will be very useful for people who want to get started with NFTs, but also for people who are already involved with non-fungible tokens. Let’s get started quickly!
Scams in the world of NFTs
Scams have always been a problem when you talk about crypto. This is actually due to two things: 1. crypto is new, 2. crypto is unregulated and decentralized.
Since crypto is very new, it is of course still very unclear for many people. Although it is unclear to many people, a large number of people do get started with it. Not only because they find it interesting, but also because they see other people achieve huge returns.
People who do not really know what they are doing, but still get started with crypto are often very sensitive to scams and the scammers know this too. This is one of the reasons that so many scammers are active in crypto.
Another reason why so many scammers operate within crypto is that it is largely unregulated and decentralized. While most people see this as a positive, there are also drawbacks.
Once you have transferred your money to a scammer, accidentally or not, there is really nothing that can be changed. The scammer has your money and there’s really nothing you can do about it. This is, for example, because there is no middleman involved who checks the transaction and no party is in charge of the network or determines the rules. So when things go wrong, there is no such party that can help you with the problem and the scammer will certainly not help you. So you’ve just lost your money (in almost all cases).
Anyone can create a website these days. You will probably have a great website up and running in half an hour. Of course, this means that it is also very easy for scammers to start a new scam website. Due to the decentralized nature of NFTs, these scams are not really regulated yet and that is why so many scams are added so quickly. The chance that you will wallet connect
You can therefore buy an NFT via a dApp, in the form of a website. You must then link your software wallet so that you can transfer money and receive an NFT in return. It often works differently with a scam. When you link your software wallet to such a dApp, you often give the scammers access to your wallet and in this way, they can do everything they want with your money. Thus, most scams are possible when it comes to NFTs.
We therefore cannot emphasize it enough that you should always pay close attention and never make hasty decisions because then you are most sensitive to scams.
What Are The Most Common NFT Scams?
The most common NFT scams are fake NFT websites, fake social media accounts, fake Telegram groups or Discord servers, ‘Claim your free NFTs here’, and Copycat NFTs. Today we take a look at these 5 forms of NFT scams. However, scammers are often very creative and they come up with a new scam idea every once in a while. So it’s not like these are the only NFT scams.
Fake NFT Websites
Probably the most common NFT scam is the fake NFT website. It is a scam that many scammers opt for because it can often be difficult to spot, but also because it is a “one-layer scam”. When you are on the website, the step to transfer money is a lot smaller than when you are on a fake social media account, for example.
If you’re dealing with a fake NFT website, in most cases it’s a 1-to-1 counterfeit version of a project’s normal website. A new project is often launched via a mint, which takes place on the project’s official website. Scammers saw this as the ideal opportunity.
The website often actually looks exactly the same. You have the same layout, the same artwork, and the same text, but more importantly: the same mint button. When you press this mint button on the real website, for example, you surrender ETH, and you get an NFT in return. When you hit the mint button on a scam website, you’re handing in ETH, but getting nothing in return.
This is not the only form of NFT scam websites. Nowadays, complete NFT marketplaces, such as OpenSea, are sometimes counterfeited. These websites also often look very realistic. However, you don’t get NFT here either when you transfer money.
When you transfer your money, there is no going back and you lose your money. That is why it is so important that you always pay close attention. Let’s take a look at how to spot such a fake NFT website in a moment, but first, let’s take a look at other common NFT scams.
Fake social media accounts
Of course, you don’t just end up on such a fake NFT website. After all, you probably wouldn’t be looking for it yourself. The scammers have thought about this too.
They are used to lure you to these websites’ fake social media accounts. These are also often identical to those of the actual projects, so it is not surprising if you initially do not realize that it is not a real account.
On these social media pages, which are often Twitter accounts, for example, they basically post as if they were just a normal project page. What they often do is approach you via a private message. This often happens on Instagram and Twitter, for example. However, they use clever tricks.
For example, they often give away whitelist spots, making people think that they can be one of the first to mint an NFT. Many see this as a very big advantage and they are very interested in this. However, instead of an actual whitelist, they are sent a link to a scam website. The hope of the scammers is that they supposedly mint an NFT there, but actually just transfer money to the scammers. Unfortunately, this still works very often…
Fake Telegram groups or Discord servers
What is perhaps even more dangerous are the fake Telegram groups or Discord servers, because they are often actually identical. They have the same logo, the same name, and often even the accounts of a project’s core team members, such as the CEO and community managers, are counterfeited so that you really feel like you’re in the real group.
are often forgiven in these groups too Fake whitelist spots, in the hope that you will transfer money via the link to the fake website. Basically, the fake Telegram groups and Discord servers, as well as the fake social media accounts, serve as ‘advertisements’ for the scam websites. They are used to lure people to these websites.
‘Claim your free NFT here!’
Another common ‘bait’ is the ‘free NFT‘. Scam projects then give away supposedly fake NFTs so that people have an interest in the project and help promote it.
When you get an offer like this, you probably think, ‘It’s free anyway, why shouldn’t I do it? At worst it won’t be worth anything, but that doesn’t matter because I didn’t pay anything for it either.’ While this sounds very logical, it’s not the worst-case scenario.
The worst case is much worse. This ‘NFT’ compare that enters your wallet. With this NFT, the scammers can then gain access to your wallet and can completely empty it.
If this happens to you, you can literally see the scammers slowly emptying your wallet. They then send all the money to their own wallets and you can’t do anything about it. Once they have access to your wallet, they can no longer be stopped and you have to be very careful with this!
NFTs Another common NFT ‘scam’ is the copycat NFTs. In such a case, an entire collection is copied almost 1-to-1, with a number of minor adjustments. The makers of such a collection hope that you will accidentally buy such a counterfeit when you actually want to buy a real one.
While this isn’t a scam like the others on this list are since you’re just getting a real NFT, it probably isn’t what you’re looking for and so you’ll want to be on the lookout for it.
A well-known example of a copycat collection occurred when the Bored Ape Yacht Club was recreated but reversed. The Bored Ape Yacht Club, along with the Crypto Punks, is the largest NFT collection ever and so obviously scammers were also very interested in this.
A number of these scammers decided to copy the Bored Ape Yacht Club collection, but then the other way around. Where the real Bored Apes look to the right, these fake Bored Apes look to the left.
Fortunately, OpenSea soon found out that this collection existed, and decided to ban it as well. Unfortunately for some people, it was already too late then…
How do you recognize an NFT scam and avoid being scammed?
While it’s great that you now know what the most common NFT scams are, it might be even more important to know how to spot these NFT scams so you can avoid falling for them. From the aforementioned scams, let’s take a look at how to spot them.
NFT websites. Often these websites really look 1-on-1, so you can hardly recognize them. However, there is 1 thing that you can always tell, namely the domain name. A fake website can never have exactly the same domain name. There is always a slight difference, eg ww1., instead of www., or a small misspelling in the name, eg boredapejachtclub.com, instead of boredapeyachtclub.com. When you suspect a website of being fake, you should always take a look at the domain name. Another tip might be to always access the website only from an official social media account.
Then the fake social media accounts. These are often difficult to recognize because they are also copied with great accuracy. However, here too there is something that you can always look at, which is the username. This can never be exactly the same as that of an official account, and so there will often be a small spelling error or something similar. Another tip can be to see if the account’s followers appear real.
Then of course you also have the fake Telegram groups or Discord servers. With these two it is really very difficult to recognize that they are fake. On Telegram, it is a little less difficult, because when you are added to a group there, you have to approve it first, because you have been added by someone who is not in your contacts. On Discord, it’s really tricky. You can look at, for example, the members and such, and chat in the group to feel if it feels legit. However, you are often redirected to a website and can then check whether you trust it.
“If something sounds too good to be true, it often is.” That’s really the only tip we can give you on the claim Your Free NFT Here Scam. Although it is sometimes not fake, it is very difficult to recognize whether such a free drop is real or fake. For example, you can do it if it is a project of someone you know. Don’t want to take a risk? Then it is probably smart to stay away from these kinds of projects.
If you want to see if you have an unclaimed airdrop, it’s better to use a reputable site like earni.fi here you just put in your ETH Address and check if you have any unclaimed airdrops in your wallet waiting for you.
Finally, we discussed the copycat NFTs. In most cases, these are quite ‘easy’ to spot, because there is always something different about them (should they not be breaking copyright rules). For example, the Copycat Bored Apes looked the other way than the real Bored Apes. The only tip we can really give you here is that you just pay close attention and put the two artworks side by side to compare them.
Today we looked at the most common scams in the relatively new NFT world. More and more people want to get started with NFTs, maybe you too? It is important that you are well prepared so that you are not scammed.
Hopefully, after reading this article, you will be better prepared for possible scams in the NFT market.