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Young adults may be more likely to lose money in online investment scams

(KYMA, KECY/CBS) - Young adults are becoming bigger targets for scammers, specifically, cons focusing on cryptocurrency through Instagram.

24-year-old Mary Peplin tells her story on how she nearly got scammed.

Peplin thought she was reconnecting with a high school friend and shared her phone number with the scammer.

"I started getting messages and phone calls from friends and family asking me, 'Hey Mary, are you on your Instagram right now asking me for money,'" began Peplin. "I think I had a panic attack. I was mortified.. I was crying, I was upset. I did not know what to do."

Scams similar to this have become more common during the pandemic, with the Federal Trade Commission saying young adults were five times more likely to lose money in online scams.

"You want to trust your gut. If you have a bad feeling about someone you're talking to on the internet, you want to listen to those instincts," said Thomas Germain, a Consumer Reports Technology Writer.

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Marcos Icahuate

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Mercedes Martinez

Mercedes Martinez joined the KSWT team as anchor/producer in October 2020. You can catch her on 13 On Your Side at 4:00pm.

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