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Defi Scams – Most Common Scams in the DeFi Space

Crypto Chain Wire

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In the world of Defi, scams are unfortunately all too common. This article looks at popular Defi scams, how they operate, and how to protect yourself.

We’ll also provide tips on what to do if somebody scammed you and how to report a scammer. Finally, we’ll discuss the implications of DeFi scamming and present examples of successful prosecutions.

What Are DeFi Scams, and How Do They Work? 

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) is a term that has gained enormous popularity over the years. DeFi is the shift from centralized financial systems to peer-to-peer finance enabled by decentralized technologies built on the Ethereum blockchain.

DeFi promises a more equal and accessible financial system, but it’s still largely unregulated. Lack of regulation has made DeFi a haven for fraudsters, who have plundered millions from unwary consumers.

We can summarize a typical scam in three steps:

  1. The scammer creates a fake project or impersonates an existing one.
  2. The scammer promotes the fake project or impersonates the existing one to generate interest and attract users.
  3. The scammer exits the scam, leaving users with worthless tokens or no access to their funds.

The Most Common Types of DeFi Scams 

There are many types of scams in the DeFi sector, but some are more common than others. Let us look into a few of this industry’s most frequent criminal schemes.

Phishing scams

DeFi is not immune to phishing scams. Due to the intricacy of several DeFi protocols, fraudsters have managed to successful target newcomers. 

The most common type of phishing scam in the DeFi space is impersonation. This is when a scammer creates a fake website or social media account that looks identical to a legitimate one. 

They will then use this fake account to try and trick users into sending them money or personal information. Another common type of DeFi scam is the Ponzi scheme. Instead of investing the money, the fraudster pays out previous investors. 

This scam is widespread in the DeFi space, as there are often high returns from investing in new protocols.

Scams Involving Fake or Stolen Identities

One of the most common scams in the Defi space is identity theft. Someone uses your personal information to register a new account or access an existing one. 

They may also use your information to apply for credit cards or loans or to make purchases in your name.

Another way that identity theft can occur is when someone steals your private key or recovery phrase. This gives them access to your accounts and allows them to make changes or send funds without your permission.

Pump and Dump Schemes

If you are not new to the field of financial investments, then you must have probably heard about pump-and-dump schemes. 

A group conspires to acquire a cryptocurrency at the same moment to drive up its price. Afterward, it sells it when at the peak price after promising a group of traders that this would not happen.

Pumpers make a profit, whereas dumpers lose. Sadly, it’s as simple as that. Pump and dump schemes are not new and have been around for quite some time. They are so common that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has issued an investor alert about them.

Forgery and Counterfeiting of Digital Assets

Unfortunately, not every project in the DeFi world is legitimate and original. Forgery and counterfeiting are rampant, with scammers selling digital assets that don’t exist or aim to look like something else.

This scam generally happens when someone creates a website or social media account that looks identical to a legitimate project. However, the page has slight changes that allow the scammer to redirect funds to their wallet. 

For example, a scam on Twitter happened when someone created a fake version of the popular Defi project Uniswap. The account looked identical to the official one, except that it had one letter changed in the URL. 

This small change allowed the scammer to siphon over $150,000 worth of Ether (ETH) from unsuspecting users.

Fraudulent Activities Associated with Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) 

Last but not least, ICOs tend to have an association with fraudulent activities. In an ICO, a company offers digital tokens for investors’ fiat currency or cryptocurrency. However, many ICOs are scams, with companies using the funds raised to enrich themselves instead of developing the project.

A severe fraud associated with ICOs is when the team behind the project absconds with the funds. This type of fraud is, technically, an “exit scam.” 

In an exit scam, the team often creates a fake project website and whitepaper, promising huge returns to investors. They will then raise money from unsuspecting investors and make off the cash, leaving investors high and dry.

How to Protect Yourself from DeFi Scams 

At this point, you will probably be wondering how you can protect yourself from falling into one of these scams. Below are a few tips.

  1. Do your research: This is the most important thing you can do. When you are looking at a project, make sure to read up on it as much as possible. Look at the team’s backgrounds and the project’s roadmap, and try to find as much information as possible.
  2. Don’t invest more than you can afford to lose: This general rule applies to all investments, but it is essential in the DeFi space. These projects are still very new, and there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding them. As such, you should only invest an amount you are comfortable losing.
  3. Beware of social media scams: Social media is a great way to stay up-to-date on all the latest news in the crypto world. However, it is also an excellent way for scammers to reach many people. Be careful about the links you click on and the information you trust.
  4. Look for projects with KYC and audit certifications: If a project has undergone a KYC (know-your-customer) or audit process, it passed a vetting procedure. This adds an extra security layer and gives you peace of mind. SolidProof, PeckShield, Hacken, and Solidity Finance are popular companies taking care of this aspect.

What to Do If Somebody Scammed You

If you think someone scammed you, there are a few things you can do:

  1. First, try to resolve the issue with the person or company you believe scammed you. This may be difficult, but it’s always worth a shot.
  2. Contact your local consumer protection agency if you can’t resolve the issue.
  3. You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) or the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
  4. Finally, you can contact a lawyer to discuss your legal options.

How to Report a DeFi Scam 

If you think you’ve been the victim of a DeFi scam, consider taking a few actions to report the criminals.

First, report it to the project team or protocol developers if possible. They may help you recover your lost funds or take action to prevent others from being scammed in the future.

You can also report the scam to a crypto exchange or wallet provider. Obviously, this is applicable if you used any of these channels to access the DeFi project. Many of them have fraud departments that can help you get your money back or prevent future scams.

Finally, you can report the scam to law enforcement. This is often a long shot, but it’s worth doing if you’ve lost a significant amount of money.

The Consequences of DeFi Scamming 

Besides losing your money, scamming in the DeFi sector has several adverse effects on the industry. For instance, it undermines the trust in decentralized finance protocols and gives scammers free marketing.

When a user falls into a scam, it’s not only the investor who loses money. The whole DeFi industry is negatively affected by it. 

Scammed users will likely be more cautious in the future, leading to a decrease in trust in decentralized finance protocols. Using popular DeFi protocols and services, they can reach a larger audience and scam more people. In addition, it gives scammers free marketing. 

Examples of Successful DeFi Scam Prosecutions 

In recent years, there have been several successful DeFi scam prosecutions. Here are some notable examples:

In 2019, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged a company called EtherDelta with operating an unregistered securities exchange. The Ethereum blockchain-based decentralized exchange EtherDelta enables users to swap ETH and ERC20 tokens.

The SEC alleged that EtherDelta’s founder had illegally profited from the exchange by operating it as an unregistered broker-dealer. Coburn agreed to pay $300,000 in penalties and disgorge nearly $13 million in ill-gotten gains.

In 2020, the CFTC accused My Big Coin Pay, Inc. of running a fraudulent virtual currency operation.

My Big Coin Pay promised investors they could use virtual currency to buy and sell goods and services. However, the CFTC alleged that the company used investor funds to pay for personal expenses, including travel and luxury goods.

The CFTC ordered My Big Coin Pay to pay $6 million and disgorge nearly $360,000 in ill-gotten gains.

These are just a few examples of the many successful DeFi scam prosecutions that have taken place in recent years. These cases show that law enforcement is taking action against DeFi scams. If you have been a victim of a DeFi scam, you should contact a lawyer to discuss your legal options.

The Importance of Verifying Senders and Receivers Before Transferring Funds 

One last thing you should consider before transferring funds is verifying both the sender’s and receiver’s addresses. Too many people have fallen victim to scams because they didn’t confirm the address before sending funds. 

If you’re not sure how to verify an address, here are a few tips: 

  • Check if the address is valid on Ethereum’s leading network. You can do this by pasting the address into a block explorer like EtherScan. 
  • Make sure the address has a balance. If it doesn’t, that could be a sign that it’s not a valid address. 
  • If you’re sending funds to an exchange, check if the exchange has a page on EtherScan. If it does, compare the addresses to make sure they match. 

These are just a few of the many ways you can verify an address. By taking these extra steps, you can help protect yourself from scams.

Bottom Line – Protecting Yourself from DeFi Scams Takes Education and Awareness

The best way to protect yourself from DeFi scams is to educate yourself and stay aware of the latest scams. Understanding how these scams work can help protect yourself and your hard-earned money.

Contact a lawyer to discuss your options if you think you may have been a victim of a DeFi scam. There were case

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EXOLO’s Triple Success: Revolutionizing Crypto at Key 2024 Events

Crypto Chain Wire

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In a year marked by extraordinary advancements in the cryptocurrency sector, EXOLO has solidified its position as a frontrunner in innovation, security, and transparency. Their participation in three prestigious events – TOKEN2049 Dubai, Hong Kong WOW Summit, and Crypto Expo Dubai 2024 – highlights their commitment to transforming the digital finance landscape and showcasing pioneering security measures and transparent operations.

TOKEN2049: Pioneering Security in the Crypto World

TOKEN2049 was a significant milestone for EXOLO, held from April 18-19, 2024. The event attracted over 10,000 attendees from more than 4,000 companies worldwide. EXOLO’s booth showcased cutting-edge security technology through an engaging mind game, highlighting their 7-layer security system. EXOLO’s speaker’s address on the aftermath of the FTX collapse and the importance of “proof of reserves” resonated with the audience, emphasizing their dedication to transparency and security.

The event’s after-exhibition party, sponsored by EXOLO, was a perfect opportunity to deepen connections with industry leaders, including influential venture capitalists and Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs). EXOLO’s active participation underscored its role as a pioneer in integrating advanced technology with core financial principles.

Hong Kong WOW Summit: A Milestone in Web3 Revolution

Sponsoring and participating in the 2024 Hong Kong WOW Summit was a key milestone in EXOLO’s Web3 revolution journey. The summit provided EXOLO with an unmatched opportunity to engage directly with industry leaders, forge valuable connections, and showcase innovations. Their exhibition booth, a vibrant hub of engagement and excitement, drew attendees into a unique experience, reflecting the innovative spirit at the heart of EXOLO.

EXOLO’s speaker’s presentation at the summit delved into the evolving economy, institutional adoption of Bitcoin, and the implications of major crypto entities’ collapses, providing profound insights into the shifts and trends shaping the financial future. His interview highlighted EXOLO’s mission to innovate safely and transparently, celebrating the growing acceptance of crypto by once-skeptical institutions.

Crypto Expo 2024: A Showcase of Transparency

Crypto Expo 2024 brought together the brightest minds in the crypto universe. EXOLO’s booth, designed with a transparency theme, stood out for its cutting-edge security features and engaging interactions. Visitors praised EXOLO’s 7-layer security system and the proof of reserve consensus mechanism, which set them apart from other exchanges. The booth’s design and technology received huge compliments, reinforcing EXOLO’s reputation for prioritizing security and transparency.

A Unified Vision for the Future

EXOLO’s consistent performance across these events highlights their unwavering dedication to security, innovation, and transparency. By implementing a robust 7-layer security system and adopting the proof of reserve consensus mechanism, EXOLO ensures a secure and transparent platform for all users. These features, combined with their regulatory compliance, make EXOLO one of the most trusted crypto exchanges in the market.

About EXOLO

EXOLO is at the forefront of the cryptocurrency exchange industry, offering one of the most secure trading platforms worldwide. With advanced security measures and a strong emphasis on transparency, EXOLO is dedicated to providing a safe and robust platform for digital currency transactions. For more information, visit EXOLO’s website.

By excelling at these landmark events, EXOLO has solidified its reputation as a leader in the cryptocurrency exchange space. Their commitment to innovation, security, and transparency continues to drive them forward, ensuring they remain at the cutting edge of the digital finance revolution.

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3000+ Attendees Hail Crypto Expo Dubai 2024 as a Resounding Success.

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The highly anticipated Crypto Expo Dubai 2024 commenced with remarkable enthusiasm and energy, marking a successful event with more then 3000+ Attendees, 50+ Speaker, 50+ Sponsors. Industry leaders, innovators, and enthusiasts gathered at the event to explore the future of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.

The Expo featured an array of influential speakers who shared their insights and visions, captivating the audience with their knowledge and experience. Notable speakers included:

  • Ahmed Elmetwally, CEO & General Director, Private Office of Sheikh Mohamed Bin Ahmed Bin Hamadan Al Nahyan, who delivered an inspiring keynote on the transformative power of blockchain in the UAE’s financial landscape.
  • Peter Peng, Founder & CEO of GPT Protocol, provided an engaging talk on the advancements in AI and blockchain integration.
  • Pekka Kelkka, Founder, web3 advisor, and educator at Papa Blockchain talked about in a panel Pushing the boundaries of Web 3 innovation – How to build a successful WEB3 brand – Digital Identity in Web 3.0: Privacy, Security, and Self-Sovereignty
  • Belal Jassoma, Director of Ecosystems at DMCC, discussed the pivotal role of Dubai in fostering a thriving crypto ecosystem.
  • Sasha Ivanov, Founder of Units Network, shared his vision for Re-staking and Endgame for Blockchain Scalability: extended consensus and proof of re-stake.
  • Arthur Azizov, CEO of B2Broker, highlighted the Revolutionizing Finance: The Power of Digital Assets in Brokerage
  • Serena Sebastiani, Director of Financial Services Advisory and Virtual Assets Consulting Lead at PwC Middle East provided expert insights discussed in a Panel about Blockchain Shaping the Future of Decentralized Technologies and Beyond.
  • Anton Patrynika, Founder of Haust, talked about DeFi Dilemmas: Navigating the Wild West of Decentralized Finance.
  • Myriam Ben Sayeh, Director of Product Management at Mastercard, discussed in a Panel about Blockchain Shaping the Future of Decentralized Technologies and Beyond.
  • Paul “The Profit” Dawalibi, CEO of Holodeck Ventures, captivated the audience with his strategies in a panel about Metaverse 2024: Forging the Route to a Novel Reality in Cultural and Entertainment Spheres
  • Max Lighter, General Manager MENA & CIS at XT.com, who delivered a keynote on Tokenization Revolution: Building Tomorrow’s Financial Landscape
  • Pratik Gauri, CEO of 5irechain, provided a visionary outlook on Blockchain for Sustainability: Exploring Decentralized Solutions in the Fifth Industrial Revolution

The exhibition floor buzzed with activity as attendees explored the latest innovations from leading exhibitors, including MULTIBNK, EXOLO, HASHAI, BST, and CRATD2C. These titans showcased cutting-edge technologies and solutions, further solidifying Crypto Expo Dubai as a premier event in the crypto space.

Highlights:

  • Inspiring Keynotes: Industry leaders presented groundbreaking ideas and future forecasts.
  • Innovative Exhibitions: Attendees engaged with the latest products and services transforming the crypto landscape.
  • Networking Opportunities: Professionals from around the world connected, fostering collaborations and partnerships.
  • Interactive Workshops: Participants gained hands-on experience and practical knowledge from experts in various fields.

George, chief operating officer at multibank.io commented, ” Our booth’s attracted substantial traffic despite the summer season, and the turnout has exceeded our expectations. This being our first expo, we’re eager to participate in future Crypto Expo Edition and see continued innovation in the expo experience.”

Bumi Kamesh Manchal, Head of Growth at EXOLO Commented “The organization of Crypto Expo Dubai 2024 was excellent. As a representative of Exolo, I had the opportunity to connect with fantastic people and potential partners. The event set a high standard for future expos, and we received an incredible response at our booth. I look forward to participating in future editions with my team.”

Charles Cieters, Co-Founder/Core BIZ ADV, CratD2C commented, we are very pleased with the event’s setup and the organization of our booth, which was exceptionally well managed. The management team was excellent, and we had great interactions with attendees. This being our second participation, we are definitely looking forward particate in future Crypto Expo editions.

Crypto Expo Dubai is a premier event that brings together the brightest minds and leading voices in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industries. Held annually in the vibrant city of Dubai, this expo serves as a global platform for industry professionals, investors, enthusiasts, and innovators to converge and discuss the latest trends, technologies, and developments in the crypto space.

For more information, visit https://cryptoexpodubai.com/ .

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Memecoin Madness: Eddie Seal Team Insults Investors and Returns Money from Presale

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Two weeks ago, the Eddie Seal memecoin project ($EDSE) began raising funds for development through a presale event. On Wednesday, a controversial post appeared on the project’s Twitter, where the team labeled the presale investors as ‘morons’.

“You morons. You invest in a presale of a new memecoin and then cry when someone runs off with the money. Get a grip and be careful because 99% of presales are scams. We have returned all the payments to the wallets from which they were sent. Eddie will proceed without a presale!” reads the tweet from Eddie Seal profile.

This incident is quite unusual, given market norms. Memecoins are not financial instruments, hence funds raised through presales are not regulated in any way. It is unprecedented for a project team to refund all investments made by individuals.

The refund might have been an attempt by the Eddie Seal team to build credibility within the crypto community, especially as Eddie Seal has announced six marketing rounds aimed at reaching a $1 billion marketcap. The campaign will culminate in an Eddie Seal cartoon, in the style of Rick and Morty or Family Guy. The six marketing rounds include sponsoring a Formula 1 team, a Harry Styles (or another top tier star) concert at Wembley with tickets for $1EDSE, a ‘spending money competition’ with 10,000 credit cards linked to one account, and a $3 million donation to MrBeast for spending in one of his videos.

It was also announced that the team plans to distribute part of the $EDSE tokens to the community gathered around the project in the form of an AirDrop. Sign-ups are expected to start soon.

The price of the $EDSE token in the coming days will reveal how the market has reacted. The token contract address for price tracking is available at eddieseal.org or listed here: 2Zvo6bnwJtyXhsPgbcfajTrEtB7NwrJhK8mMmtEXvHHc

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