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Man arrested in connection with get rich quick online scam

A scam post on Instagram targeting Bermuda residents (Photograph supplied)

A man has been arrested in connection with a social-media scam that promised a quick return on a $1,000 deposit, police said today.

But a spokesman added reports continued of people being fleeced despite repeated warnings for the public to be wary of “online get-rich-quick schemes”.

One fraud, which mainly uses Instagram, asked people to transfer $1,000 into a Bermuda account for ten minutes with a promise of a $10,000 return.

An Instagram account connected to the scheme, @tara_gotbanz, has been confirmed as fraudulent.

The scam was also promoted as a legitimate investment on island social-media accounts, which are believed to have been hacked.

The police spokesman said that no one who deposited funds had received the $10,000 payout.

Police have arrested the holder of the bank account that took the deposits and a man is now on police bail.

Fraudsters have been directing victims to a different bank account on the island since the arrest was made.

The spokesman said the investigation was continuing.

Anyone convicted of fraudulent inducement to invest or deposit could face up to seven years in jail.

Police reported in December that residents in 2021 had lost $3.8 million to a variety of online fraud schemes – with just over $40,000 recovered by authorities.

In some cases, victim's life savings were wiped out.

More than half, at 56 per cent, were e-mail scams, but social media accounted for 22 per cent of fraud.

A man was arrested in early December over a scam that similarly promised $10,000 for a $1,000 investment.

Other schemes used the WhatsApp messaging app to lure targets with a fake Samsung lottery, demanding a fee up front for the transfer of nonexistent winnings.

Detective Chief Inspector Sherwin Joseph of the special investigations unit warned the public: “Be suspicious – if it sounds too good to be true, it more often than not usually is.”