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What Rampant Scams in Cryptocurrency Say About The Users
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Scammers, by all standards, are scums of the earth, but one thing they’re often credited for is subtlety.
A wise person could see through the sweet talk and abundance of promises, but an experienced scammer doesn’t need all that. Instead, they would take advantage of the circumstance - like the hand you needed at just the right moment.
Scammers are also deliberate in their scenarios, making you think everything has been a coincidence. Like it was your doing the whole time until you realize that it wasn’t.
I’m obviously not talking about crypto scams because those are the kinds that make old-school scammers look like try-hards.
Bitcoin and decentralization brought with them an unsettling phenomenon. The scams are becoming less and less subtle, yet the victims, are more and more willing.
Influencers Are NOT Crypto Experts
When I say “influencers” I don’t mean the likes of Adam Back, CryptoCred, or Elon Musk. I mean the mediocre flock of content creators, YouTube commentators, Twitch streamers, and the occasional Tiktok mini stars.
They convince people to buy into scammy crypto projects based on nothing but the fact that they got a couple of million views, stealing from their own fans who gave them fame.
The setup is simple. A scammer would go on a decentralized exchange, typically Uniswap or Sushiswap, and create crypto. They pay some developers to make it look legit, smart contracts and everything.
Afterwards, they reach out to content creators and tell them how much money they could make simply by hyping it up. They do that and encourage the fans to invest in crypto. Once the liquidity is ripe, they pull the rug, selling everything and making away with the money.
A lot of times, the influencers themselves are behind the scam or paying developers to do it. Some may even create the crypto from scratch.
The names they used for these coins are nothing short of absurd. It’s almost like they want people to avoid the crypto, but for some reason, that failed.
Dogecoin and Shiba aside, there have been some weird names for the coins they used to prey on their followers.
We’ve seen something like PotCoin for weed advocates, Putincoin, Trumpcoin, and it gets as weird as MonkeyJizz. Imagine telling your spouse you’ve invested the second mortgage in two million MonkeyJizz tokens.
The worst part is people fall for these scams like rain in September.
Doesn’t matter how many times influencers made it to the news for scamming fans with fake crypto, as soon as the next one promotes another coin, people scramble to buy it.
Every time, it’d have some stupid names like Squidcoin or MILF tokens and just one word from the friendly neighborhood Twitch streamer, it’s the hottest thing on the blockchain.
It’s absolutely wild.
Fool Me Once, Shame on You
Fool me twice because I asked for it.
One of the most notable crypto scams of 2021 involved FaZe clans and some other content creators, such as RiceGum and the coin called SaveTheKids.
The purpose of it was supposed to raise money for children’s charities. The scammers were pretty deliberate in their endeavor, making promotional videos and frequent hype posts.
Sure enough, once enough people bought in, the developers pulled the rug and disappeared, no children helped.
One of the most popular Twitch streamers, Adin Ross, promoted the MILF token sometime in May, which quickly showed its true colors.
After scamming his viewers, people who pay a monthly subscription to watch him, he admitted to getting paid for it and laughed.
Twitch and YouTube seem like such huge platforms, but there’s a handful of creators who lead a somewhat tight-knit community. So, if you watch one of them, you’ve likely heard of the others simply by association.
That means when you see one of them scams all their fans, it should be natural to keep your guard up when another tries to do the same thing.
For some reason, that doesn’t seem to be the case for those people. The creators keep doing what they do and the viewers keep pouring their pockets out like it’s part of a ritual.
Recently, a YouTuber named Ice Poseidon got confronted with a rug pull he supposedly did with his crypto CX Coin. The scam was worth $500,000 and people were angry. Mostly. Some are still defending him to this minute despite having lost money in the whole process.
The worst part is he outwardly admitted to doing everything the media is saying he did. He was simply “looking out for himself” so he kept the money.
He gave some of it back, though. Like $10,000. Enough for some of his fans to take his side.
The list goes on, but can the victims go on any longer? The only good news in all this is despite the frequent scams, they’re still considered small scale compared to the crypto market as a whole.
That doesn’t mean it isn’t a growing problem. As much as we hate to say it, scams are almost an integral part of finance. We can filter out most of it simply by having due diligence and discretion.
That said, for the love of crypto, stay away from random coins and projects on the internet.
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