The California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) has received a complaint from at least one California resident regarding a crypto investment.
The victim transferred more than $1,400,000 from Coinbase to an app-based cryptocurrency trading platform. Victim was able to withdraw more than $45,000. Victim then executed multiple trades through that platform and believed approximately $8-9 million was in the account. But when the victim asked the platform to move the funds back to Coinbase, he was told that the funds were frozen, and that he needed to deposit approximately $600,000 as “verification” that the funds were not laundered. Victim has not been able to withdrawal any more funds and now believes that the platform is a fraud. The company operated a website at https://www.dcex-exchange.com.
This appears to be what is commonly called an “Advance Fee scheme,” which can take many forms, as discussed here: https://www.fbi.gov/scams-and-safety/common-scams-and-crimes/advance-fee-schemes. This also appears to be what’s known as a Social Media Scam, which is described here: https://dfpi.ca.gov/2022/05/20/romance-scams-and-crypto-assets-fact-or-fraud/.
The DFPI urges consumers to exercise extreme caution before responding to any solicitation offering investment or financial services. To check whether an investment or financial service provider is licensed in California, consumers may contact the Department for questions or inquiries at firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll-free at (866) 275-2677. If a consumer believes a person or company has violated state law or acted improperly regarding a consumer financial product or service, they may file a formal complaint with the DFPI at https://dfpi.ca.gov/file-a-complaint/.