We often speak about local bitcoin trading as if it’s a sure-fire way to accommodate buying and selling of digital currency in the shortest amount of time. And to some extent it is, when it all goes according to plan.
But according to a Redditor’s short account of what happened during his most recent trade, we’re reminded that there are bad people out there who at the end of the day are nothing but criminals.
I’m in a French city (not Paris) and somebody contacted me over localbitcoins for an in person trade. He wanted to buy 500 euros worth of BTC. We agreed to meet at a big open public square where there is a bar and lots of people milling around. When we met up two people arrived and we started to talk about how the site works and how he can verify the transaction BTC. I then whip out my phone and log in to my account stressing the whole time that I need extra passwords to release the funds. Then when I ask him for the [money], one guy grabbed the phone while the other pulled out a tear gas canister and sprayed me. Luckily I had managed to grab back my phone and started to shout and swing a few punches and they ran off. I was glad that the place was quite full and people quickly helped me. I will be filing a police report but I’m not sure that it will do any good.
We’re a little confused on the tear gas canister part (perhaps he meant pepper spray?), but we’re glad he came out of the situation in somewhat good form. Also, he still has his bitcoins.
It just goes to show you that you always want to organize trades with trusted people using LocalBitcoins and other apps like Mycelium local trader.
Setting up a meeting with someone you don’t know to make a money transaction is really just asking to get robbed. That’s why trust plays a huge role in local trading.
Keep this one in the back of your mind on your next in-person trade.