Students raising awareness after teacher loses thousands in cryptocurrency scam

Wessel entered his phone number during his research and got a message from a “fellow crypto novice” on Whatsapp, who convinced him to give the site Earning Field a shot and invest a small amount to gain confidence in trading.

He bought cryptocurrency from a legitimate dealer and then transferred the crypto from the dealer’s wallet to Earning Field, in the process of doing so he severed links with any traceable money transfer.

Earning Field claims to be the best investment plan of 2018, with plans users invest into that vary in percentage earnings based on how much you invest, with the most expensive earning claiming to give a 30 percent return.

Wessel first invested US$100. He received a 15 percent return after 24 hours and was able to withdraw the full amount of money. 

However, things took a turn when the Whatsapp user convinced him to invest in the more expensive plans.

When Wessel tried to withdraw his money from the plan he was told he had to invest US$1000 every week for six weeks as part of additional conditions he wasn’t told about and if he wanted to pull out he could buy out of the plan with half of the total investment.

When Wessel tried to buy out of the investment he was told to invest into another plan because their system “could not deal with the change” and then was asked to provide multiple additional payments to the company.

“Stupid me again transferred money in the hope of getting out,” he said.

Alarm bells started to ring for Wessel and he realised he had lost over NZ$5000 that he wouldn’t get back.

“In hindsight, there were so many warning bells that should have stopped me from the word go.”

He went to his electronics class at Otumoetai College after being frustrated at the company and one of the students who knew a lot about cryptocurrency looked at the website and told him it was a scam.

Wessel said there were signs the class found that it was a scam including the company registration was fake and no physical or email addresses are shown, but when searched online…

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