Starling Bank recently announced that they are suspending the deposit of funds to crypto exchanges such as Payward Ltd d/b/a Kraken (www.kraken.com). Banks and fintechs have “observed high levels of illegal activity” related to crypto exchanges. Welcome to the new reality. We have testimonials from victims showing how ID theft and bank fraud works. Scammers use either victims’ KYC records or AnyDesk to open accounts there in their name and then receive deposits from them. The money is then gone. Kraken refuses to refund the victims.
Starling Bank said that it will implement a new crime prevention system and lift the crypto ban on 23 June 2021, Decrypt reported.
IT Theft and AnyDesk
Kraken has been used, for example, by the scammers of the Elit Property Vision Racket around Rezaeian Mohammadi Majid. First, the scammers steal the ID uploaded by the victims. Then, they use these ID documents to open an account at Kraken and other crypto exchanges in their victims’ names.
Alternatively, the scammers use remote desktop tools like AnyDesk to open the accounts at Kraken & Co and/or steal the access data via their victims’ PCs. This also gives them access to the account.
Once the account with the crypto exchange is established and verified, scammers then ask the victims to deposit money into this account at Kraken. Unfortunately, the scammers have access to this Kraken account. They buy cryptocurrencies with the victims’ money and transfer them to other wallets. Gone with it is the money.
Broker scams require their victims to upload ID and proof of address. This allows them to conveniently open accounts online at crypto exchanges or with many fintechs. As great as the new generation of financial services is, it is dangerous. How to deal with it needs to be learned by regulators, law enforcement agencies, and consumers. The cybercrime activists (a/k/a scammers) can. So be super careful and don’t upload copies of documents to sites you don’t trust. And do not provide Anydesk access to your computer.