The Wall Street Journal recently reported on its own review of 1450 ICO white-papers, of which just under 20% bore the hallmarks of a scam. For the most part, these were identified through plagiarised content and/or anonymous or suspicious team compositions.
The prevalence of fraudulent activity in the ICO space is, then, not to be underestimated. And it is the reason for which the United States’ Security and Exchange Commission decided this week to publish its own scam ICO website as a means to educating the wider public to the dangers they face.
80% of Crypto-Traders are Novices
HoweyCoin, the SEC’s invented token sale, claims in its white-paper to have entered into partnership with “a number of large, well-known travel service providers” in a nine page document that is, frankly, much more convincing than even many legitimate ICOs.
As the user clicks on its link to be directed to participation in the sale, they will find themselves redirected to the the SEC’s own website which provides further information on the kinds of tricks employed by fraudulent websites.
The Wall Street Journal and SEC initiatives coincide with another recent study by the eToro platform which, aside from pointing out the gender imbalance in crypto trading – up to 90% of all crypto-traders are men who are drawn disproportionately from finance and IT-related professions – points out that as many as 80% of online crypto-trading is performed by what the platform qualifies as novices.