Due to an uptick in Bitcoin scams, Canadian police have launched a public awareness campaign to educate potential victims of the danger.

In Regina, the police have reported that an increasing number of people are getting scammed — even though many don’t know what cryptocurrency is. According to a CBC report, the government has responded by trying to get the message out to the public through media releases and social media. A poster campaign is said to be the next step.

The primary goal is to remind people that the government will never demand payment in cryptocurrency. Toronto police ran a similar campaign earlier this year:

Per CBC, scammers are spoofing their calls to make it look as though they are calling from a local police service or government agency. Then, over the phone, the scammers will tell the victim, often an elderly person, that they are from a government agency and that their SIN number has been compromised or that they owe taxes. The specifics vary, but the endgame is always the same, direct the victim to a Bitcoin ATM and extort money from them.

Continue reading below

Similar schemes have been reported in Winnipeg, where back in June, a store owner decided to take matters into his own hands, placing a large sign on the Bitcoin ATM warning customers of phone scams involving cryptocurrency.

Source: globalnews.ca

There have been many high profile Bitcoin scams in Canada in recent years. In 2017, fraudsters posing as tax collectors succeeded in convincing people to send in over $340,000 in Bitcoin.

Authorities in the U.S. have issued similar warnings — like in August when California’s attorney general office published a list of the most common digital currency scams.