The confirmed list of fake ICOs, Ponzi schemes and wallets

Rhys Muter 8 January 2018

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Thinking about getting involved in bitcoin or an ICO? You’ll need to make sure you look at this list.

To begin with, finder has compiled a useful list of known scams going around the Internet. This is a good place to start if the business you are dealing with seems a bit suspicious. Another good place for information is forums like Reddit. Reddit forums have many users and there may be some reviews about the company.

How to deal with cryptocurrency scams

Cryptocurrencies operate in a largely unregulated space. That means if you lose your money, there is no protection and often no way to get your money back. This is why it is important to deal with reputable companies who have numerous good reviews. Beyond this, keep an eye on our fake ICOs and official charges list. Expect that list to grow in 2018.

Another helpful hint is to remember that if it seems shady, it probably is. If the return seems too good to be true, it probably is. It is best to conduct your own thorough research into your cryptocurrency trades.

If all else fails, feel free to leave us a comment and one of our friendly staff will be happy to assist.

Fake ICOs and official charges

The table beneath contains a regularly updated list of all confirmed fake initial coin offerings. The group below represents organisations that have been charged by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission or other relevant authorities.

Fake initial coin offerings / Ponzi schemes

Fake ICO NameDescription
ConfidoPromising a new decentralised shopping exchange, the programme would be suspended indefinitely. This was after raising US$375,000.
REcoinMaksim Zaslavskiy, founder of REcoin, has been charged by the US Securities and Exchange Commission for launching a US$15 million ICO. REcoin was marketed as the first decentralised cryptocurrency backed by property assets.
PlexCoinThe creators of this ICO are currently facing charges in Canada and the United States. The creator of PlexCoin, Dominic Lacroix, was sentenced to two months in jail for contempt of court relating to an order not to launch the PlexCoin ICO.
BitConnectThis company received a cease and desist order (4 January 2018) from the Texas State Securities and Exchange Commission

Fake wallets

Fake wallet scams are called "phishing scams." These are complex ploys that are very sneaky and could dupe the unseasoned trader. For example, if you're downloading a wallet for cryptocurrency storage, make sure the web address is correct (see picture). By downloading an incorrect wallet, you stand the chance of losing the entire purchase.

What the picture goes to show is just how easy it can be to access a fake wallet and potentially lose money. As a rule, a trader is best placed to obtain a physical wallet to hold and add to at the trader's discretion.

Wallet NameDescription
My Ether WalletAn app wallet that was designed for the Apple mobile operating system iOS.
This wallet became one of the top rated apps on the Apple App store and managed to fleece US$735,000 from unaware victims. It successfully impersonated the legitimate MyEtherWallet program.
MyBTG WalletAn online wallet that asked for access to private keys. This resulted in the loss or theft of over US$1 million

Money-for-bitcoin scams

The table below contains a list of known money-for-bitcoin scams. These scams differ in the ways they seek to trick prospective traders into coughing up their hard earned money.

The table below has been referenced from

  • The most common of these ask traders to deposit money for cryptocurrency.
  • The most costly of these are the ones that try to get traders to exchange their bitcoin for money.
  • A large number of these scams are also mining scams that ask for money to receive shares in the profits of the mining enterprise.
  • Quite often the mining enterprise does not exist at all.
This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering. It is not a recommendation to trade. Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks – they are highly volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before relying on this information. You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators before making any decision. Finder, or the author, may have holdings in the cryptocurrencies discussed.

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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    HiltonJanuary 11, 2018

    You don’t have any evidences to prove that those are scam or ponzi

    • Staff
      HaroldJanuary 12, 2018Staff

      Hi Hilton,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      As per checking the reference information on this article was based on
      You may also need to visit their website for further details.

      I hope this information has helped.


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