It’s unfortunate, but it happens. First came cryptocurrency. Then came the cryptocurrency crooks. In the emerging cryptocurrency marketplace, what needs to be done to protect consumers from scams, schemes, and swindles? That’s the topic of a half-day workshop on June 25, 2018, in Chicago, and the FTC just announced the agenda.

Decrypting Cryptocurrency Scams brings together federal and state law enforcers, consumer advocates, and industry members to survey the landscape, describe the pitfalls, and discuss steps to protect consumers from deceptive practices. FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Andrew Smith will open the event with remarks at 1:00 Central Time. The first panel will talk about the short but already eventful history of cryptocurrencies. Beginning with bitcoin and continuing with the recent growth in initial coin offerings (ICOs), how are consumers using cryptocurrencies – payments, investments, or something else?

The next panel will map the scam landscape. How are con artists operating in the marketplace? What challenges do law enforcers face in detecting illegal practices? And are there tell-tale signs that can tip consumers off to possible fraud?

Panel #3 will talk about effective approaches to cryptocurrency scams. How are law enforcers responding so far? Do consumers know how to report fraud? How should government agencies enforce the law effectively while still encouraging pro-consumer innovation? What needs to be done to educate consumers about the risks?

Decrypting Cryptocurrency Scams kicks off at 1:00 CT at DePaul University, 1 East Jackson Boulevard, Suite 8005, in Chicago. It’s free and open to the public. Pre-registration isn’t required, but if you’re planning to be there, do us a favor and email us at sends e-mail). Want to watch via webcast? We’ll post a link on the event webpage a few minutes before the start time on June 25th.

Attention attorneys: This event has been approved for 2.75 Illinois MCLE general credit hours.