The 10 biggest scams in cryptography.
1. OneCoin scams
Since the invention of cryptocurrency in 2009, many coins have passed themselves off as legitimate cryptocurrencies, including OneCoin. Founder Ruja Ignatova encouraged participants to buy training materials and tokens, promising them immeasurable wealth . This led to people from more than 175 countries joining everyone to be duped out of $4 billion.
The first red flag should have been the lack of blockchain behind the coin. Instead of using cryptocurrency trading platforms, he used his own.
Founder Ruja Ignatova went into hiding in 2017 and was never seen again.
Speaking of family conspiracy, Africrypt was one of the biggest cryptocurrency scams involving two South African brothers.
Rais and Amir founded Africrypt together in 2019. When they started, they asked people to deposit money that would be used to buy bitcoins.
Many people not only in Africa, but also in the UK and around the world rushed to invest in Africrypt. Everything collapsed In April 2021. Seven days before the alleged “hack,” all Africrypt employees lost access to their accounts and the company’s server platform.
After the hack, the brothers disappeared along with $3.6 billion in bitcoins.
Thodex was one of the worst cryptocurrency scams ever. The founders of the Turkish cryptocurrency developed an elaborate plan to rob cryptocurrency investors of $2.2 billion.
In April 2021, they announced they were suspending operations due to “ongoing partnerships.”
They asked investors not to worry and to resume operations in about five days. But it wasn’t even five days later. Investors began complaining that they couldn’t withdraw money from their accounts. Some went further to file lawsuits.
They never got their money back because the founders disappeared long ago.
4. The Mt. Gox scandal.
The Mt.Gox scandal is certainly one of the biggest cryptocurrency scams in history. The Japanese bitcoin exchange had been operating since 2010, and by 2013 it accounted for more than 70% of bitcoin transactions worldwide.
Mt.Gox was first attacked in 2011, and attackers stole $8.75 million . The second and deadliest attack occurred in late 2013, when hackers took $800,000 worth of cryptocurrency, which was valued at nearly $450 million.
The company never recovered from the blow and declared bankruptcy in 2014. Thus, they had to liquidate their assets. The stolen amount would be worth $5 billion today.
5. Hacking Twitter 2020.
In July 2020, Twitter accounts of prominent figures were hacked . These include the accounts of Ilon Musk, Joe Biden and Barack Obama. The scammers promised to double the bitcoins sent to said bitcoin wallet in the name of giving back to the community.
This led to subscribers of the hacked accounts sending their bitcoins. The hackers accumulated about $100,000 worth of bitcoins before the public even knew it was a scam.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey addressed the issue and promised to investigate. They proceeded to block accounts and delete the fraudulent tweets. This happened about an hour after the accounts were hacked.
6. Coin spike.
The cryptocurrency scam involving CoinDash occurred on July 17, 2017. This was the day CoinDash announced its initial coin offering. Hackers replaced the Ethereum source address with their own and accumulated 43,000 Ethereum tokens.
At the time, CoinDash’s CEO announced that anyone who sent their Ethereum to the malicious address would receive compensation in the form of CDT tokens in the amount of lost Ethereum.
Surprisingly, three months later in September, the hacker returned 20,000 Ethereum tokens and the remaining 23,000 remained. This move led members of the public to speculate that this was an inside job. 7. PinCoin
Unlike other Ponzi schemes, PinCoin seemed legitimate in the beginning. Investors were paid with a token called iFan, and they promised that the tokens would create a bridge between fans and celebrities.
According to Tuoi Tre News, PinCoin promised that each investor would receive a 48% monthly return . This led to more people investing in the Vietnamese cryptocurrency.
In March 2018, investors experienced the shock of a lifetime when they could no longer access their accounts.
The Pincoin team went into hiding and took with them the $600 million they had accumulated from more than 32,000 investors.
8. Adin Ross’s MILF Token.
Adin Ross is a Twitch streamer involved in a scam in which his followers stole thousands of dollars. In May 2021, Adin used his social media platform to promote the MILF token to his subscribers. After his promotion, the value of the token increased nearly 20-fold within 24 hours.
According to Coffezilla, Adin Ross received $200,000 for his participation. Ross later denounced the MILF token in a video that went viral. He said he was just doing it for promotion and “hoped” none of his subscribers bought the token. This led to a complete decline of the token, and people lost the money they had invested in the MILF token.
9. Bored Ape Yacht Club.
The Bored Ape Yacht Club consists of limited-edition NFTs at the highest prices. Unfortunately, entrepreneur Calvin Beserra was the victim of a scam on October 31, 2021 when he lost all 3 of his NFT Bored Apes.
The scammers introduced themselves as tech support on discord and offered to help him solve the problem he was facing. Coincu News reported that the 3 NFT Bored Apes were valued at nearly $1 million . One of them he bought just two weeks before the incident. Truth be told, he naively handed out his credentials to unknown people and consequently paid dearly for it.
10. Squid game token
In September 2021, the South Korean limited series Squid Game was released on Netflix. It received widespread acclaim and broke records, racking up more than 1.65 billion streaming hours in its first four weeks.
The show became such a big sensation that a cryptocurrency, the Squid Game coin, emerged from it.
However, the token was very suspect. For example, people could only buy the coin, but not sell it. CNBC also reported that the accounts of the creators of the coin on Telegram and Twitter could not be commented on.
However, that didn’t stop people from buying the coin. Two weeks later, the creators sold all of their tokens, causing the value of the coin to drop to $0. This move caused investors to lose about $3 million.