The FBI is calling on cryptocurrency investors who lost billions of dollars in an initial coin offering scam to come forward.
The Feds are investigating defunct cryptocurrency Bitconnect, which collapsed a year ago after the British government and two US states filed orders against the founders .
Bitconnect was running an ICO to raise cash claiming to offer a 10% return and was a suspected Ponzi scheme, where investors are paid returns out of money raised from new people joining the scam.
Bitconnect was listed in top 20 cryptocurrency tokens until the price plummeted by 65% in January 2018 after hitting a peak of $463 a month earlier.
By the end of January 2018, the price was $5.92 after the founders closed the Bitconnect exchange and a judge in Kentucky, USA, froze the coin’s assets.
Bitconnect is now worthless.
“For a majority of BCC’s existence, the only place to purchase, trade, or sell the cryptocurrency was the through the proprietary exchange hosted by Bitconnect,” said the FBI.
“By mid-December 2017, BCC boasted a market cap of over $2.5 billion. Bitconnect guaranteed investors up to a 10 percent total return per month on their investment, following a tiered-investment system based on the sum of an investor’s initial deposit.
“If you invested in Bitconnect, please complete our brief questionnaire. Your responses are voluntary but would be useful in the federal assessment of this matter and to identify you as an investor and/or potential victim. Based on the responses provided, you may be contacted by the FBI and asked to provide additional information.”
The rise and rise of S4FE
A blockchain app designed to register and identify lost and stolen property has rocketed in value over recent weeks.
S4FEwas first released in December 2017, but has shot up in value by more than 600% since the start of 2019.
The token now sits just inside the top 60 cryptocurrencies by market cap at $100 million, with a value of $2.42, despite a recent bounce in popularity.
The chart below maps how S4FE has grown since February 7.