With the coronavirus pandemic continuing to affect livelihoods across the world, several people have turned to criminal activity in a bid to earn a living and rip off other people.
In China, a new Ponzi scheme has picked up steam and is currently rolling over citizens in their droves. Per a new report from industry news source Decrypt, the scam shares an eerily similar working process as the infamous PlusToken operation.
A Lot of Unclear Jargon Hiding a Dangerous Scam
As the report explained, the new scam has been tagged the Antimatter Kingdom, or AK for short. Even though the fraud originated earlier this month, it’s been able to milk investors off 18,000 BTC, worth about $12 million.
The scammer’s website claims that it runs on the so-called Capital Cell Fission Blockchain (CXC). The site also makes some similarly outlandish claims, including competing with the “cruel cosmic” entropy law and providing a lasting and orderly development of commercial civilization – whatever on Earth that means.
As expected, investors have been promised some juicy returns for throwing their Bitcoin at it. As the website explains, they will be joining the company in the “the ecological exploration of a trillion-dollar value.”
The platform asks investors for Bitcoin donations, which the company will then use to mine the AK tokens. Afterwhich, the tokens would be given to investors, along with interest in Bitcoin.
Per usual, the scheme does pay a few investors in a bid to save face. However, as Decrypt confirmed, the AK token – as well as the entire project 0 is objectively worthless.
Harry Denley, the Director of Security at Ethereum wallet MyCrypto, also explained to the news source that the private key-generation process used by the project is insecure. However, given that the project isn’t open-sourced, it’s impossible to know for sure what we’re dealing with here.
Still, there’s little doubt that the token will continue milking unsuspecting investors of their money and Bitcoins.
Chainalysis Refutes PlusTokens’ link with the Market Crash
While the PlusToken scam remains one of the most significant crypto scam operations in history (second to, perhaps, OneCoin), the scam’s influence appears to be still traceable to the market and several significant developments.
Apart from being the apparent blueprint on which the AK scam is being built, a portion of the crypto space has also pointed to the PlusToken scam and its liquidation as the sole instigators of the crypto market crash that happened March 12 to March 13.
In a recent webinar, however, Philip Gradwell, the chief economist at blockchain research firm Chainalysis, dispelled the rumors. He explained that while the liquidation process was a watershed moment (given that about $2.9 billion in crypto was liquidated), there wasn’t much of a correlation between the liquidation and the crash because the former happened before the latter.
As the company explained further, PlusToken asset movements to exchanges had dropped drastically before the March crash, thus indicating that many people had cashed out the funds already. For instance, 12,423 BTC (worth about $125 million at the time) was moved to a cold wallet in early February, and a similar event took place in March.