Cardano-NFT Anti-Fraud Guide: The Ultimate Guide To Deter Scams in Cardano

Hello everyone; I have seen an abundance of scams taking place in the CNFT space by a sad group of bad actors and I wanted to combat this fraud by educating the good people of Cardano on how to stay safe in the CNFT space. In this article I go over the main ways people get scammed in the CNFT space to help educate you so that when the time comes a con artist approaches you; you will be aware of all the red flags, and hopefully never get scammed!

This article is also available on Medium, and any follows or shares of this article would be greatly appreciated especially shares just so we can spread the word on how to stay safe in Cardano. It’s sad to see people lose thousands of ADA or their precious NFTs to these con artists and education is the best way to combat this. If this article even saves one person from a scam, I will be truly happy and this article will have done its part.

Check out the article on Medium here: Cardano Anti-Fraud Guide. The Ultimate Guide To Deter Scams in… | by The Cardano Times | Sep, 2022 | Medium

Cardano Anti-Fraud Guide

The Ultimate Guide To Deter Scams in Cardano

Anti-Fraud Guide

Deterring Fraud In Cardano With Education

The Crypto, NFT, and Metaverse spaces as a whole have been bombarded with an onslaught of con artists looking to defraud hard-working and more importantly good people pursuing a better life for themselves in an already highly volatile market. From breaches draining entire wallets in the span of a few minutes to something as simple as staff impersonation scams; there are ultimately little to no resources to allow users to educate themselves on how to stay safe, especially when engaging in peer-to-peer transactions or conversations.

As the founder of a project dedicated to deterring fraudsters in the Metaverse; our firm is entirely aware that ultimately the only individual who can stop scams are those being confronted with one. We believe that with the proper guidance and resources; we can make this community and these industries so much safer. In this documentation; we hope to highlight the main avenues and techniques con artists pursue to steal from innocent bystanders, and more importantly educate users on the steps to take to avoid being defrauded or conned.

General Rules To Follow

Protecting Your Seed Phrase

The recovery seed phrase to your wallets is one of the most important pieces of information for sustaining ownership of your assets. Don’t ever let anyone see it or share it with anyone in any scenario whatsoever, or store it online in for example notepad applications or on your computer’s hard drive. It’s also advised to use hardware wallets like Ledger or store your recovery seed phrase on paper and store it securely. Never allow anyone or any entity to have access to your seed phrase ever.

Following Project Announcements

When looking for announcements for projects whether it’s during mints, critical announcements, or any type of scenario; make sure to only look for notifications through the project’s official Discord Server or their official Twitter page. If you ever encounter a direct message claiming to be sharing news for a project, it is most definitively fraudulent.

Using Secondary Marketplaces and Escrow Services

When looking to purchase, sell, or trade assets in the CNFT space; never engage with Over-The-Counter (OTC) trades; meaning you engage in a transaction without using secondary marketplaces like Jpg.Store or escrow services like Trading Tent, this is generally unwise even if you are engaging in a transaction with someone you know and trust. Always using secondary marketplaces or escrow services is the most secure way to stay safe and engage in the CNFT space.

Connecting To Decentralized-Applications (D-Apps)

When connecting your wallet to decentralized applications whether they are secondary marketplaces like, escrow services like Trading Tent, or even DeFi protocols like Lending Pond; make sure the application you are connecting to is a trust application. Connecting to these platforms or signing transactions to enter their platform can sometimes be extremely dangerous especially if the application is simply a link impersonating more known applications. Always stay safe when connecting your wallet to D-Apps.

Scam/Fraud Methods

Fraudulent Trading Tent Links

One of the growingly popular scam techniques plaguing the Cardano Community is the new method of posting fraudulent links for the popular escrow service; Trading Tent, draining wallets entirely; stealing all assets within. The con artist will first attempt to direct message you interested in purchasing an NFT you have listed somewhere on a Discord Server, asking you to purchase the asset for exactly what you listed it at or even above the price you’ve listed it for.

Fraudulent Trading Tent Link Example

If they proceed with the scam; they will then post a fraudulent link claiming to be for the official Trading Tent escrow service, as shown above. The official Trading Tent link is and any other link claiming to be the official site is nothing more than a fraud. These links will drain wallets leaving innocent sellers destroyed financially and emotionally. Please be aware of this new scam, and always remember to stay safe.

Counterfeit Assets on Secondary Marketplaces

Another common tactic that scammers have been using since the inception of Cardano NFT’s is the minting and selling of counterfeit assets impersonating expensive and larger projects in hopes of turning a quick profit. This scam has been slowly decreasing overtime, but it still remains to be a prevalent scam conning thousands of ADA out of innocent buyers each and every month.

Specifically, on secondary marketplaces like, you can determine if an asset is legitimate or not through a number of methods. The first and easiest method is to look for the verified star icon shown on the asset on the right. The second method is through verifying the price of said asset is above or equal to the floor price of the project you are buying from. As shown on the asset on the left, you can see this plot has a price of 60 ADA; although the floor price of Pavia plots is well over 150 ADA. The third and most conclusive method is verifying the policy ID of an asset to the project it’s allegedly tied to. If the policy ID of the asset doesn’t match the policy ID of the project; it is simply nothing more than a fraud.

Staff Impersonation/Over-The-Counter (OTC) Escrow

This scam is a bit more complex and has grown in popularity among fraudsters due to its effectiveness at getting innocent bystanders to trust the con; utilizing two people or two discord accounts to first engage as a regular individual looking to buy a property, but then when they go to purchase on a secondary marketplace, they say they seem to be encountering issues with their purchase or an error has occurred at the fault of the secondary marketplace you’ve listed on. This “regular individual” will then say he/she wishes to buy the property, but it won’t allow them to purchase on the secondary marketplace. After a few minutes of back and forth, the individual will then suggest getting a moderator from the Discord Server of the project your asset is from to have their Staff conduct an escrow acting as a middleman. They will then inform you a moderator or staff member has direct messaged them and offered their services to conduct an OTC escrow, but unfortunately this “moderator and/or staff member” is nothing more than a con artist impersonating staff in hopes of you letting your guard down.

A fraudulent buyer and moderator pretend to discuss troubleshooting

They then will invite you to a group chat; with the buyer and the alleged staff member, trying to troubleshoot issues for the buyer at first then offering to conduct an escrow. If you encounter this situation, please be advised this is nothing more than an attempt to defraud you. Staff members or moderators will not direct message you to conduct escrow services, and will certainly not make group chats to do just that.

Another tactic utilizing staff impersonation is where they will simply impersonate a staff member from a project and direct message you directly if you have recently made a public support request in that Discord Server.

This is another common method of impersonating staff to attempt to defraud you in some capacity; if the Discord Server or Project you are in has a public support feature, it is highly irregular to see staff then direct messaging you as a result of making a public support request. Please stay safe and always make sure the staff you are talking to align with the usernames of official staff members in their discord server. Some will be as blatantly obvious they are cons like the one above or they will try to impersonate staff properly like the image below.

Wallet Verification/Troubleshooting Scam

Another new scam tactic that has grown in popularity as well is individuals reaching out to innocent bystanders through direct messages posing to offer support due to an error/failure you have in your wallet due to some sort of update you need to add or verification you have yet to complete.

These con artists claim to be experienced developers, coders, programmers, etc that are reaching out to you randomly after miraculously discovering your wallet of all wallets had some sort of issue. This allegedly kind-hearted gesture is nothing more than a ploy to direct you to a website or application where you will then sign a transaction that will drain your wallet entirely stealing everything you possess within it.

In this example; the individual who first approached the innocent bystander than brought another member posing as Virtua staff, who will then direct you to head on over to an external link and scam you out of everything you have.

This fraudulent method is a combination of the scams that have been prevalent in our community for quite some time, and is seemingly on the rise due its effectiveness.

Fraudulent Project Impersonation Scam

Another scam that is on the rise in regards to scamming individuals by draining their wallets is con artists creating discord accounts impersonating known projects in and outside the Cardano ecosystem.

As shown in the image above, users will impersonate projects and send an aesthetically pleasing message claiming you have won giveaways with insane rewards like in this case 0.5–7 ETH by visiting an external link that drains your wallet or possibly worse. This is the first and most notorious use of impersonating projects as giving our rewards this size is appealing to anyone who sees this. Sadly in this space; far too often we see people falling victim to thinking they will be rewarded immensely, and it’s a good rule to follow that if it sounds too good to be true it most likely is.

Another utilization of impersonating projects is direct messages from technological projects, Cardano wallets, Decentralized applications, etc; all claiming you have some sort of critical issue that needs repair. They will then ask you to visit an external link that is impersonating the project and is nothing more than a scam to drain your wallet completely.


Although sadly there are a number of methods scammers use to con people out of thousands of dollars each and every month; we can fight back against these morally absent individuals by educating ourselves on how to never be scammed again, and we can share the message to others to ensure it happens to no one again. We can’t track and banish scammers in Cardano, but we can educate the community how to stay safe so these scammers never con an innocent bystander ever again.


Hi, I did not know about Trading Tent or these other services for running NFT trades.
Since we bring in new solutions for CNFT’s we have our own open marketplace for these Blueprint NFT’s, built on top of Magento like ordinary products.
The incentive model also rely that the trade is done through our platform to properly define the new Blueprint Owner.

We are most definitely defined as an Over-The-Counter (OTC) trade solution. But a scam, not at all.
If you would like to discuss this with me, feel free to reply or send me a PM.
I am just wondering how to mitigate OTC = Scam, as you say a User should never be engaged in that.
Sounds a bit silly to state that, when not all are…

Clarification on our NFT’s
Blueprints = Step-by-step guides on how to build a DIY project, connecting products (Bills of material) into the blueprint.
Blueprints can be converted to a Blueprint NFT.
Blueprint Author = same as an Artist for an NFT art piece.
Blueprint Owner = the current owner of a Blueprint, which gets incentivised by purchases done through the Blueprint.

As a project lead myself I offer a human escrow service that are essentially OTC with middleman, but I do stand by my statement that it is generally not advised to not engage in OTC trades directly with the seller or buyer, not acquiring the services of a middleman.

And if you have not heard of these marketplaces or escrow services, how are you purchasing NFTs or getting involved in the first place?

I have investigated NFT markets, but they all concentrate around art.
As we bring in new use-cases for NFT’s, we need our own marketplace to handle the extra features, to not stagnate development that relies on other 3’rd party services.

I disagree with the concept that secondary marketplaces are centered around art. Yes the demand can be in favour of art-related NFT’s rather than purely technological simply because some individuals may not have the capacity to truly appreciate the utility it offers simply due to lack of knowledge where as with art you can truly visualize its beauty in a way other NFTs just can’t replicate.

However; there is an emerging market of Metaverse properties on secondary marketplaces which is nothing more than images unlocking access to properties in a virtual world, that are pulling immense volume on the secondary marketplaces that are allegedly concentrated on art.

One of the virtual worlds; Pavia, has done almost 30 million in secondary marketplace sales alone as one of the leading CNFT projects in the space.

If you have new use-cases or utility for NFT’s, that still can be sold on a secondary marketplace! You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars simply to isolate investors to stay within your own collection and ecosystem.

Yeah that’s true, I totally agree with you, and the value of aligning with secondary marketplaces is important.
As we are still in development, we hope that Blueprint NFT’s is something that can be sold through secondary marketplaces as well in the near future.