ICO scams are a threat to the burgeoning blockchain technology and everyone that invests in it. That much we can agree upon, right? It's a tragedy they still exist, and it looks like they're not going away anytime soon. So, how do you spot these scams? Just for a moment, let's put ourselves in the mind of a criminal and create our very own malicious scam. Maybe after that, we will know how to better avoid them.
Alright, the first step in creating your criminal initial coin offering is a catchy name. Now, that's not to say all catchy names are subject to your suspicion. However, we're creating a fake coin here, so like the schemers do, pick something everyone can easily remember.
Most startups like to put the minds behind the mission on their website. A fake company will do this also in order to seem a little more legitimate. Don't just take their word for it; do a little research. If we were building our own fraudulent company, we would use an employee list full of generic names. That way, it's hard to Google. Furthermore, they will all have ridiculous, over the top resumes to blow you away. Hence, if you see a startup with these qualities, odds are they shouldn't be trusted.
Most people who are interested in Bitcoin head on over to Bitcointalk. It's the most popular Bitcoin forum in the world, and you'll find that any big-name project gets announced here. As a result, scammers buy accounts there. Yes, you can actually buy an account there. Hence, it's easy to fool someone into thinking you are a respected member of the community and announce your new, fake digital currency for people to spend money on.
This is where you get your best criminal copywriter and get to work. When writing the pitch, you want it to be as confusing as possible. Layer the pitch with all the Blockchain lingo you can find. Overload it with keywords until the reader is convinced something amazing is happening and they'll essentially throw their money in your direction.
Here's where all your hard work comes together. Get a website with a fancy looking ".io" address. If you need inspiration, just visit any old startup website and copy that format. Maybe even add a "countdown to launch" for dramatic effect. Also, add a little widget that shows how much money people have invested in your token. That should do the trick.
Well, there you have it. You have created your very own fraudulent organization. Hopefully, you learned a thing or two about how to spot these now. If not, then head over to YouToken.io. There, you can accelerate your knowledge of all things cryptocurrency and Blockchain.