Google Says Crypto Scammers Masqueraded as ‘Romantic Partners’ to Entice Android Users

Google Says Crypto Scammers Masqueraded as ‘Romantic Partners’ to Entice Android Users

Since 2019, the two developers have purportedly been uploading dubious crypto investment applications on the Google Play Store. 

Google has sued two developers for purportedly utilizing its Android-founded Play Store to flog suspicious applications to trick would-be cryptocurrency investors. Further, the company noted that scheme members posed as potential ‘romantic partners’ to motivate users to be part of the scams.

Google Levels Charges Alleging Developers Scamming Crypto from Android Users

On April 4, Google filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. The company claims that Hongnam Cheung and Yunfeng Sun, both Chinese, have tricked more than 100,000 persons into downloading 87 malevolent applications since 2019. 

According to the lawsuit submission, the defendants intended to defraud their victims. The ‘apparently genuine applications’ guaranteed significant returns to persons intending to invest in crypto, including a coin called ‘SkypeCoin.’ 

However, Google claims that the promised gains were deceptive. The lawsuit indicates that when users attempted to cash out their balances, the developers’ doubled down on the scheme’ and asked for additional fees.

Developers Deploying Deceptive Social Engineering 

Further, the lawsuit indicated that since around 2019, the offenders have carried out their version of the scheme via social engineering, tricking victims into ‘investing’ in applications available on the Google Play Store and other means. The applications pretended to be cryptocurrency exchanges as well as other investment platforms.

The lawsuit also reveals how the offenders supposedly used YouTube videos to promote their applications and attempted to develop ‘romantic relationships’ using Google Voice. 

The ‘romantic partner’ or ‘friend’ would often direct the victim via the process, giving encouraging explanations concerning the technical and financial elements of investing. 

Google also claimed that ‘financial losses seem to vary from one hundred to several thousands of dollars for every victim.’ The company failed to verify information concerning the cryptocurrencies provided via the applications to a media resource. 

However, in a statement, Halimah DeLaine Prado, the General Counsel, revealed that maintaining online safety is critical to their business. She also said they will not tolerate the misutilization of their platforms to promote cryptocurrency scams. 

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Eric Lozano
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Eric Lozano

Eric Lozano, a notable expert in crypto journalism, possesses a keen eye for blockchain trends and digital currency analysis. His articles delve deep, elucidating complex crypto topics with precision and flair. As the crypto realm expands, Eric remains an influential and trusted voice for enthusiasts and professionals alike

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