Recently, Steve Sokolowski and Christopher Sokolowski have been contacted by numerous individuals. These people masquerade as known contacts who obtained a new phone, or claim to be a long-lost connection. These criminals often use public data to impersonate friends and family members, and provide information that supposedly only that person would know.
After a lengthy discussion, they then try to obtain personal information, passwords, money, and other items of value. The criminals may be targeting Steve and Christopher because they are public figures in the cryptocurrency industry.
Beginning on May 3, 2021, Steve and Christopher will require everyone, regardless of who that person claims to be, to prove his or her identity upon first contact before continuing the conversation. Making this requirement applicable to everyone will reduce the possibility of making a mistake.
For existing contacts
If you contact Steve or Christopher using a new method of communication, please use an existing method of communication to confirm that it is you. For example, if you sent a text message from a new number, send an E-Mail from an existing E-Mail address confirming the phone number.
For new contacts
If you are someone who has not contacted Steve or Christopher in a long time and wishes to start a conversation to catch up, a brief video call is the only acceptable initial method of verification. After that call, the conversation can continue in another medium.
Steve and Christopher will no longer conduct financial transactions unless they are first confirmed with a voice or video call at the time of the transaction. For example, if an item is to be purchased, or if a bill is to be paid, Steve or Christopher will call the creditor using their own contacts list to confirm identity before sending any money.
Things we will not do
We will not open zip files or click on links from unverified contacts, or click on links that claim to verify a contact. We will not accept knowledge of something that happened in the past as valid proof. The only way to verify a contact is by a previous communication method or a video call.
We apologize for the inconvenience and delay that this brief verification can cause. We are not trying to be rude, and this procedure should not be taken to imply that we don't trust you.
Hopefully, you can understand that we need to be absolutely sure that the people who we are talking to are genuine. We don't want to make it difficult for people to talk to us, but because so many people have lost money to Internet scams, we need to be extra careful about identity verification moving forward. Thanks for your patience!