Daily fraud update: 21st April

Chris Lee

Facebook reveals plans to hire crypto fraud specialists

Social networking giant Facebook has announced that it intends to hire a range of specialists in cryptocurrency scams as part of its plans to launch a new digital currency.

It wants to hire people to work on its Calibra project, which is more commonly known just as Libra.

The new staff will be based in the Irish capital Dublin, which is a key node in Facebook’s network around the world.

It is understood that the firm currently employs a four figure number of staff in the country.

Calibra will seek to recruit around 50 people in fields including fraud.

According to Laura Morgan Walsh, who serves as head of operations for the overall project, the firm is recruiting people with expertise in a wide variety of areas.

“During this time of global uncertainty, we’re continuing to invest in our team located in Dublin”. she said.

“We’re actively hiring experts in fraud, compliance, workforce management and customer care to expand our operations team supporting the Calibra wallet”, she added.

The crypto press expressed some surprise at the news, especially given the wider context of the coronavirus.

The pandemic has caused a number of firms around the world to engage in hiring freezes.

Facebook’s decision to continue perhaps indicates its strength and confidence in the market.

The news that Facebook intended to move into the crypto space through Libra were made public a while ago, but the plans have since hit a number of snags.

Key corporate members of an organisation it set up as part of the plans, for example, quit.

One of these was financial services organisation Visa, which flagged regulation and compliance as an issue when it left.

“Visa has decided not to join the Libra Association at this time”, a spokesperson for the firm said at the time.

“We will continue to evaluate and our ultimate decision will be determined by a number of factors, including the Association’s ability to fully satisfy all requisite regulatory expectations”, it added.

Arrests made in Singapore over alleged crypto scam

A group of Chinese nationals have been taken into custody by law enforcement officials in Malaysia over claims that they engaged in a cryptocurrency scam.

According to reports in the crypto press, the men attempted to impersonate a number of famous figures.

The men are accused of having carried out this scam for two months – and potentially longer.

They are believed to have used messaging apps popular in China, including WeChat.

They were kept under watch for a period of time before they were arrested this weekend.

They were taken into custody in the Iskandar Puteri area of Malaysia.

According to one press report, the alleged scammers even pretended to be the Duke and Duchess of Sussex – better known as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

The name of the scheme was apparently named Bitcoin Evolution.

If they are convicted, they could face a maximum of a decade in prison.

Chris Lee

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