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Daily fraud update: 25th September

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UK’s FCA warns against forex clone firm

The UK’s financial regulator has posted a strongly worded warning on its website in an attempt to deter traders from using a site called Midpoint Exchange.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) claims that Midpoint Exchange is in fact a clone of a legitimate, FCA-authorised forex firm called Midpoint.

The clone firm appeared to have set up a website mimicking the legitimate firm.

That website was not accessible as of Wednesday morning.

In a statement, the FCA explained more about what those behind the clone firm scam tended to do.

“This is what we call a ‘clone firm’; and fraudsters usually use this tactic when contacting people out of the blue, so you should be especially wary if you have been cold called”, it said.

“They may use the name of the genuine firm, the ‘firm reference number’ (FRN) we have given the authorised firm or other details.”

The FCA also took the step of revealing the details of the clone firm so that customers did not fall victim to its fraudulent offer.

It said that the website offered by the clone firm was www.midpointexchange.com, and that the email address for it was [email protected].

It is purportedly offering a telephone number of 07537 183 255.

The real Midpoint has the full name of Midpoint & Transfer Ltd, and also has a legitimate firm reference number issued by the FCA which is 610889.

It is based in Central London, and its legitimate URL is www.midpoint.com.

On there, it describes itself as offering a “safe, trusted currency exchange and international payments platform”.

Anyone who finds what they believe might be a clone website is advised to contact the FCA on 0800 111 6768.

Derbyshire residents at risk of crypto scam, say police

Police in the English county of Derbyshire have warned people against a potential crypto scam which may be putting them at financial risk.

Police said that advertisements placed on social media websites were causing people to be tricked by scam sites, and that the potential for financial loss is significant.

According to police, the names of some of the scam sites popular at the moment include coinipop.com and coin-bits.com.

It is believed that those behind the sites are using fake reviews to enhance their legitimacy.

In a statement to press, Jodie Nevin – who is the cyber project officer for Derbyshire – appealed for people to assist with tackling the problem.

“Social media adverts are being used to lure people into depositing small amounts of investment money with malicious trading sites”, she said.

“Scammers then pretend the investment has made a profit and convince victims to deposit more.”

“Do not use these sites. They are fraudulent. Please help to protect other people from becoming victims by raising awareness of these fraudulent sites”, she added.