Scam ICOs are very easy to create, and anyone can do it! Many investors have lost their money to these fake, enticing offerings created by criminals. While the government is still trying to figure how best to eradicate the ICO fraud that exists in the crypto space, more ICOs are being launched.
Recently, the Texas State Securities Board closed an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) ‘WindWideCoin’ because it used a fake endorsement from celebrities especially Jennifer Aniston – an American actress and film producer – to promote its sales of the token.
Reported on Wednesday, 16th May 2018, the emergency cease-and-desist order claimed that, in order to illegally peddle unregistered securities, WindWideCoin had used pictures of Jennifer Aniston, Prince Charles, and one of the past Finnish Prime minister, Matti Vanhanen to mislead investors and the general public.
The ICO website features fake testimonials from celebrities and one testimony from ‘Kate Jennifer,’ who has more than a passing resemblance to Jennifer Aniston reads:
”I invested 4 BTC on Thursday and I received 8 BTC on Friday. It’s great to have extra money for weekend shopping- like they say, easy come, easy go. Thank you wind wide coin.”
Again, another fake investor, Niinistô Ann, from Russia testified on the WindWidecoin’s website.
”I’ve been a member of windwidecoin.com for only 34 days. But, My life has already changed!. Not only have I made my first $82k, but I’ve also met some of the most incredible people in the process. Thanks, Charles!”
The director of enforcement of Texas State Securities Board, Joe Rotunda, told CCN through an email that the scheme is just like the others.
According to the email, the shutting down of the WindWideCoin is a reminder that the Texas State Securities Board is doing everything possible to uncover the dubious tactics employed by fake ICOs promoters.
While they may change their identities and the products they offer, all of these fake ICOs use similar strategies. As usual, they build a professional website with sophisticated features, including beautiful graphics, compelling whitepapers, countdown clock, enticing testimonials, high returns on investments, etc.
Although, falsely claiming that a prominent figure in the society is associated with a scheme is one of the common antics fraudsters use to gain more promotion for their schemes.
While it is not the first time for scam ICOs to use celebrities as part of their scheme, this is the first time a more direct approach that involves both the use of celebrities’ names and photographs to promote fraudulent ICOs.