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Blockchain in Insurance: Use Cases and Implementations

Blockchain in Insurance: Use Cases and Implementations
This article was first posted on Medium: https://medium.com/swlh/blockchain-in-insurance-use-cases-and-implementations-a42a00ebcd91
Almost all major insurers are planning to integrate blockchain by 2021, according to PwC. At first glance, such a high level of commitment to new tech may seem surprising in an old and traditional industry such as insurance. However, enterprise blockchain adoption is poised to help insurers significantly cut costs, become more responsive to customers, and write more business.
Two recurring themes throughout this post are that:
  1. Blockchain can lower costs for insurers and lower insurance premiums for customers.
  2. Blockchain can help insurers understand & price risks better by allowing customer, risk and policy information to be shared more quickly and securely across parties the insurance ecosystem. This will increase revenue and growth prospects by allowing insurers to price insurance products more accurately.
Costs are becoming an issue for insurers. Life insurers in Asia and the US have seen cost ratios climb above 30% and 20% respectively over the past few years. This figure should ideally be below 20%. Part of this is due to increased compliance costs such as Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) laws. A bigger reason is that selling and servicing insurance policies is still a complex and labor intensive process.
Insurance Growth Rates (CAGR) 2012–17. Source: EY
A recent EY insurance market report showed low growth rates for Life insurance and Non-Life insurance outside Asia Pacific. Digging deeper, Life insurance premiums in the US declined by 0.4% from 2012–17.
Insurers find themselves needing to reduce operating costs and write business more effectively. While blockchain is not a magic elixir, proper adoption will help address these needs.

What is Blockchain?

In their book “Blockchain Revolution,” authors Don and Alex Tapscott describe blockchain as “an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.”
Organizations need secure ways to record transactions and manage information flows, making blockchain’s appeal easy to see. Blockchains ensures that:
  • All participants have a copy of the digital ledger and that each copy is updated in real-time when transactions occur;
  • There is no centralized server, making hacking next to impossible;
  • A recorded transaction theoretically cannot be reversed, which makes the ledger an immutable source of truth no matter how many participants hold copies;
  • Transaction data, records, and participant identities can be authenticated while remaining private.
Enterprise blockchains used by companies are different from public blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Public blockchains are too clunky and slow for enterprise purposes. Enterprises require scale and speed — the ability to process hundreds of thousands of transactions very quickly. Public blockchains suffer from very low transaction speeds. Their verification process is cumbersome because participants are unknown and untrusted. Private enterprise blockchains don’t suffer from this limitation since all participants are known and trusted.
Enterprise blockchains have the following characteristics:
  • Participation requires invitation: all participants in the blockchain network are trusted
  • Data is private and secure: you don’t have access to transactions that you are not a party to, even though you’re on the same blockchain network
  • Enterprise blockchains are fast and light: the network can handle thousands of transactions per second and numerous participants working in tandem
  • ‘Smart contracts’ automate processes: transaction rules and process flows can be programmed to execute automatically, allowing payments and transfers to execute without human intervention, for example
The insurance industry will benefit from blockchain because most underwriting and claims activity requires cooperation among multiple parties. Some of these parties are from outside the firm, making data security important. Reconciling data from multiple sources during claims investigation, for example, is time and resource intensive and prone to manual error. Putting this data on a blockchain would streamline operations.

Blockchain Use Cases in Insurance

Industries have always adopted technology that has made it easier, faster and cheaper to conduct business. Blockchain tech promises to deliver on all three fronts, especially in the insurance industry, which is seen as slow and complex.
Let’s face it, insurance customers don’t enjoy interacting with insurance companies. Customers often deal with time-consuming paper forms when applying for a policy or submitting a claim. They may have to speak with people at insurance companies and hospitals, for example, to get medical insurance claims reimbursed.
On the flip side, insurance companies have to deal with the high costs of managing and servicing policies. Many of these costs are administrative — claims administration, verification and reconciliation of information, and paperwork. Insurance also requires coordination among many parties — consumers, brokers, insurers and reinsurers. This introduces overhead costs that translate to higher premiums paid by customers.
Blockchain can help make selling and servicing insurance better, faster and cheaper by improving fraud prevention, claims management, health insurance, and reinsurance. The end result could be lower prices and better experiences for customers.

Fraud Prevention

According to the FBI, non-health insurance fraud in the US is estimated to be over $40 billion per year, which can cost families between $400–700 per year in extra premiums.
Common types of insurance fraud can be eliminated by moving insurance claims onto a blockchain-based ledger that is shared among insurance companies and cannot be modified. It can prevent criminals from collecting money from different insurers for the same claim, for example.
Blockchain will make coordination easier among insurers. If all insurers access a shared blockchain ledger, they would know if a claim has already been paid. Since all insurers use the same historical claims information, it would also be easier to identify suspicious behavior.
Insurers currently try to detect fraud by using publicly available data as well as data acquired from private companies. The problem is that these data sets are incomplete due to legal constraints around sharing personally identifiable information of individuals. Blockchain, by cryptographically securing data, would allow claims information to be shared across insurers without divulging personally identifiable information.

Claims Management

Putting insurance policies on a blockchain as smart contracts can radically improve the efficiency of Property & Casualty (P&C) insurance, saving insurers more than $200B a year in operating costs according to BCG.
Let’s use car insurance to illustrate this. If you get into a car accident and it was the other driver’s fault, you must submit a claim to your insurance company to recover your loss. Your insurance company investigates your claim and tries to recover money from the other driver’s insurance company. The other insurance company has its own claims processes, which leads to duplicated work, delays, and possible human error. The end result is that you get paid much later than you’d like, and insurers spend time and money on unprofitable activities.
Putting insurance policies and claims data on a blockchain that different insurers, reinsurers, brokers, and other parties can access reduces duplicate manual work by different parties.
Insurance policies as smart contracts on a blockchain automatically execute programmed claims processing actions, automating information transfers between insurers and other parties, and releasing payments to policyholders. Additional info such as claims forms and supporting evidence supplied by policyholders can later be added to the blockchain so that all parties have the same information, making disputes unlikely.

Health Insurance

Blockchain enables fast, accurate, and secure sharing of medical data among healthcare providers and insurers. This will translate into faster health insurance claims processing and lower health insurance costs for customers.
Privacy laws around sharing patient data among hospitals and health insurance providers makes it time-consuming and expensive to process health insurance claims. Lack of data can even lead to insurance claim denials.
Patients deal with numerous doctors, hospitals and insurers over time and across borders. A patient’s medical history exists in fragments across healthcare providers and insurers. Worse, the way in which insurers and healthcare providers cooperate, share patient data, and process claims involves complex manual work & reconciliation. Even the technical infrastructure for medical records is outdated.
Putting encrypted patient records on a blockchain allows healthcare providers and insurers to access a patient’s medical data without sacrificing patient confidentiality. An industry-wide synchronized database of patient data can save the industry billions annually. Patient privacy is ensured because the blockchain stores cryptographic signatures for each medical record, which verifies the authenticity of the record without having to actually store any sensitive info on the blockchain. Changes to a patient’s medical records are also stored on the blockchain, which creates an audit trail.

Reinsurance

Data sharing among insurers and reinsurance companies is complex, time consuming, and requires inefficient manual work. Blockchain can streamline information flows between insurers and reinsurers.
Reinsurers provide insurance to insurance companies. That way, insurance companies won’t get wiped out when many claims occur at once, such as during a hurricane or earthquake.
The problem is that reinsurance processes are lengthy, inefficient, manual and are based on one-off contracts. Insurance companies generally engage multiple reinsurers for the same risk, which means that data has to be shared among many companies to settle claims.
When reinsurers and insurers share a blockchain ledger, data related to policies, premiums and losses can exist on insurers’ and reinsurers’ systems simultaneously. This takes away the need for reconciliation, which saves everyone time and money. Reinsurers can also automate claims processing and settlement.
PricewaterhouseCoopers estimates that blockchain can save the reinsurance industry up to $10 billion, which can then lead to lower insurance premiums for customers.

Blockchain Implementation in Insurance

Saving the best for last, here are just some examples of how the insurance industry is using blockchain. Keep in mind that at this point, there are more prototypes and POCs than full-scale implementations.

R3

R3 is an enterprise blockchain company. It maintains an ecosystem of over 300 firms across industries that build blockchain software apps on top of its Corda platform. These apps can be used across industries from insurance to banking to healthcare. R3 maintains 2 versions of Corda; an open source platform and an enterprise-specific version called Corda Enterprise. Both versions of Corda are compatible with each other.
Insurance-specific applications on Corda are designed to help insurers automate back office activities, streamline operational flows, and generally spend less time on things like claims admin and data processing. There are also apps being development to speed up underwriting and enable faster data sharing among insurers and reinsurers.
Basically, Corda wants to host a common set of insurance apps that the entire industry can use to cut costs and boost revenue. Corda currently boasts over 15 insurance-specific apps, with a few of these deployed into production such as:
  • Blocksure OS: solves problems related to legacy systems, slow manual processes and high rates of error by automating policy admin and claims activities. Policyholders can access all policy and claims info in one app.
  • MIDAS: is a motor insurance authentication platform designed to serve 80 motor insurance companies in Hong Kong. It provides real-time authentication of motor insurance policies, verification, and audit trails. This can help with fraud detection and reduce time required for certain verification activities when it comes to policy and claims management.

B3i

B3i was a blockchain consortium, now an independent software company, supported by leading insurers and reinsurers including Swiss Re, AXA, Zurich, Munich Re, and Allianz. They develop blockchain-based applications for insurers and reinsurers and aim to create industry-wide standards. B3i aims to use blockchain tech to streamline back office processes and claims management — basically lower costs and do things faster. In 2018, B3i switched from IBM’s Hyperledger Fabric to R3’s Corda platform.
In July 2019, they launched a Catastrophe Excess of Loss product on Corda. The product is designed for brokers, insurers and reinsurers to negotiate and place risks more efficiently by reducing manual activities related to placing, renewing and managing treaties.

AXA

In 2017, AXA launched Fizzy, a blockchain platform for flight delay insurance. Customers purchase flight delay insurance, which is recorded in a smart contract. The platform is connected to global air traffic databases and receives flight statuses. If a customer’s flight is delayed for more than two hours, the smart contract automatically triggers payment to the customer.
Customers don’t have to fill out claims forms or speak to service reps. The claim is deposited directly to their bank account. Customer satisfaction: maximized.
AXA does not have to spend time processing claims, verifying flight data, or enduring paperwork for payment authorizations. They save on time & cost and can deploy these resources to more profitable activities.
Update: Fizzy has since been discontinued after 2 years, possibly due to lack of appetite from the travel/airline industry. Regardless, Fizzy was a pioneer of sorts and has laid the groundwork for future blockchain insurance platforms.

Blue Cross

Hong Kong insurer Blue Cross is using blockchain since April 2019 to speed up medical insurance claims processing and prevent fraud.
Blue Cross’ blockchain platform validates claims data in real-time, which greatly reduces fraud potential from duplicate claims filing, for example. Claims are also processed faster for their 200,000+ customers. The platform also removes the need to reconcile claims data across parties such as insurers and medical service providers. Medical practitioners such as doctors and chiropractors who don’t employ many admin support staff could save time and money by partnering with Blue Cross.
Blue Cross’ blockchain platform is built on Hyperledger. Blue Cross is owned by Bank of East Asia.

Insurwave

Insurwave is a blockchain-based marine hull insurance platform launched in 2018. The platform was a collaboration among Ernst & Young, Guardtime, Maersk, Microsoft, and ACORD. It was built on R3’s Corda platform.
Insurwave provides real-time information on ships’ location, condition, and safety factors that both insurers and customers can access. If ships enter high-risk areas, Insurwave automatically factors this into underwriting and pricing calculations.
Premium calculations for this type of insurance are very complex. Having an immutable audit trail for ship-specific information substantially eases this calculation, enables accurate pricing, and speeds up underwriting. Insurers are also able to better account for ship-specific risks.

The Future of Blockchain in Insurance

These are still early days. Most of the work around blockchain in insurance is in the Proof of Concept stage and regulation is slowly catching up. However, we have already seen some applications that have gone live.
The ‘quickest win’ for blockchain in insurance is in the area of cost control. Rising costs are hitting insurers across most markets. Blockchain platforms and Dapps that allow firms to free up resources by automating claims management, fraud detection and data reconciliation, for example, will be heartily endorsed by executives.
The real win will be when blockchain platforms enable insurers to create better products and onboard customers faster — things that bring in revenue. For this to happen, we need a more robust ecosystem of insurers, reinsurers, tech companies and service providers working together on industry-standard blockchain platforms.
This has already started with software companies like R3 launching enterprise-grade blockchain platforms such as Corda Enterprise. We also have leading insurers involved in B3i that share common goals related to blockchain development. It remains to be seen if these natural competitors share enough long-term interests to sustain the initiative. If not, industry-wide blockchain adoption may take longer and become more fragmented.
However, the benefits are too obvious to ignore. We will probably see a few committed companies invest early in blockchain and enjoy a short period of above-normal performance, with early adoption coming from mature markets burdened with high costs as well as some parts of Southeast Asia (e.g. China, which proactively adopts tech). The rest of the industry will follow.
submitted by BlockDotCo to u/BlockDotCo [link] [comments]

Don Tapscott changes his view on the Bitcoin Blockchain Technology

Don Tapscott changes his view on the Bitcoin Blockchain Technology submitted by BitcoinJobBoard to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

10 Reasons Why The Perfect Storm is Brewing for AION

The perfect storm is brewing for Aion to become a leader in the crypto space:
 
1. AIONEX, EDCON & CONSENSUS 2018 conferences have introduced AION to more people, developers & institutional investors than ever before. Matthew Spoke's performance on Consensus Interoperability Panel with Ripple, Polkadot & Litecoin left everlasting reactions & received the only applauses at the end of the Interoperability Panel.
AION's inaugural Dev conference AIONEX at Toronto on May 02, had 650 attendees. This is a record unseen by any other crypto's inaugural dev conference to date, compared to just 40 attendees at 1st Ethereum Devcon in 2014. And if Devcon grew to 350 attendees in 2015, it's not hard to see that the next AION Dev conference attendance will be in the thousands.
 
2. Token Swap from Aion ERC-20 to native Aion coins will soon be announced. The ETH-AION cross-chain bridge is already built & was showcased live on stage at AIONEX & EDCON, so it's only a matter of time before it's released.
 
3. US, Korean & Chinese exchanges are clearly waiting for the Token Swap to take place before they list native Aion coins rather than Aion ERC-20 tokens, they don't want to painstakingly swap ERC-20 tokens themselves as seen in ICON's token swap delay that's taking exchanges about 2-months & still not accomplished.
 
4. AION team has grown to 60 in-house team members in 4 different Aion offices in North America, Europe & Asia and plan to grow to 100 people by EOY. This is extremely rare in the crypto space & can only be compared to less than half a dozen of massive platform projects like CARDANO & EOS.
 
Aion GitHub activity is continuously ranked in top 10 platforms on Darpal Rating and CryptoMiso. Github activity, along with commits quality, are important metrics that get overlooked all the time when people compare Aion to other projects based on number of telegram users. Ethereum & Neo never even had telegram... Fat Protocol Ecosystems are not built by telegram hype but rather by worldwide Dev meetups & armies of developers that can build or contribute something that can change the world.
 
5. AION PR & Marketing are shifting into high gears now that the Mainnet is live. AIONEX, EDCON & CONSENSUS 2018 have put AION on the radar of the media. Matt Spoke is slowly becoming crypto's poster boy as seen on RBC's Disruptors Panel. It's only a matter of time before the mainstream media finds out about AION.
 
6. AION is introducing Real Technological Break-throughs with the first Cross-Chain bridge that completely moves tokens seamlessly between different blockchains using the Burn/Mint mechanism, unlike all Dapp platform projects since Ethereum that are still simple blockchain 2.0 platforms with no cross-chain capability or Atomic Swap projects that only transfer value between chains, but come with major limitations.
 
Another important point that gets forgotten in the Aion vs other interoperability projects is that Aion is all these 3 things at the same time:
 
AION is increasingly recognized as the leader of Interoperability —the holy grail of blockchain tech— that will solve scalability, privacy & isolation issues to unlock the true potential of Distributed Ledger Technologies. "This is the internet, decentralized."
 
7. METCALFE’s LAW states that the value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system (n2). This was proven repeatedly in the growth patterns of fat protocols like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Neo. Metcalfe’s Law favors interoperability projects even more, because Aion native tokens have utility far beyond the main Aion-1 blockchain:
 
8. Major AION Partners & Clients like Deloitte, TMX group (Canada's largest stock exchange), Moog Space & Defense Group, Vodafone, TD Bank, etc... are slowly moving their blockchain infrastructure to AION blockchain as they announced at AIONEX conference. This is taking place & growing the AION ecosystem while other Dapp platforms are rushing to parade their new Dapp ICOs that have little to no legitimate need for blockchain tech in the first place, but were rushed to launch ICOs to simply boast their Dapp numbers & suck more ICO funds from unsuspecting investors.
 
9. Future Partnerships will be relatively easy for AION to acquire given AION team's role as a founding board member of the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance, with the likes of Microsoft, Intel & JP Morgan (not just a regular EEA member like most other crypto projects) & the Blockchain Research Institute.
 
Aion cofounder Matthew Spoke has also strong credentials as the Fintech Advisor for the Ontario Securities Commission & Ministry of Finance and as a cofounder of the Muskoka Group along with the Tapscotts & Ethereum cofounder & ConsenSys founder Joeseph Lubin.
 
Not to mention Aion's unmatched advisory board from TMX group VP & Board of Directors and connections to Ethereum cofounders; Anthony Di lorio, Joeseph Lubin, Vitalik who's an advisor to Nuco.io & his father Dmitry Buterin who's an Angel investor in Nuco.io the company building Aion.
 
10. The TRS is coming to an end soon; however, the end of the token release schedule will slowly starts to get priced in long before the last release of Nov 2018; the date after which no more Aion will be released to public ever. Only mining/staking rewards will continue thereafter. The TRS also helps AION market cap climb up the MarketCap list with every release, adding to the increasing visibility & exposure that AION is getting.
 
People have seen what happened to fat protocols like Ethereum, Neo & Cardano, but it takes a special breed of people (and a bit of luck) to foresee why AION network interoperability will have a much bigger growth & impact potential on the entire crypto space. (This is not a financial advice. DYOR.)
submitted by Unleash-The-Kraken to ethtrader [link] [comments]

10 Reasons Why The Perfect Storm is Brewing for AION

The perfect storm is brewing for Aion to become a leader in the crypto space:
 
1. AIONEX, EDCON & CONSENSUS 2018 conferences have introduced AION to more people, developers & institutional investors than ever before. Matthew Spoke's performance on Consensus Interoperability Panel with Ripple, Polkadot & Litecoin left everlasting reactions & received the only applauses at the end of the Interoperability Panel.
AION's inaugural Dev conference AIONEX at Toronto on May 02, had 650 attendees. This is a record unseen by any other crypto's inaugural dev conference to date, compared to just 40 attendees at 1st Ethereum Devcon in 2014. And if Devcon grew to 350 attendees in 2015, it's not hard to see that the next AION Dev conference attendance will be in the thousands.
 
2. Token Swap from Aion ERC-20 to native Aion coins will soon be announced. The ETH-AION cross-chain bridge is already built & was showcased live on stage at AIONEX & EDCON, so it's only a matter of time before it's released.
 
3. US, Korean & Chinese exchanges are clearly waiting for the Token Swap to take place before they list native Aion coins rather than Aion ERC-20 tokens, they don't want to painstakingly swap ERC-20 tokens themselves as seen in ICON's token swap delay that's taking exchanges about 2-months & still not accomplished.
 
4. AION team has grown to 60 in-house team members in 4 different Aion offices in North America, Europe & Asia and plan to grow to 100 people by EOY. This is extremely rare in the crypto space & can only be compared to less than half a dozen of massive platform projects like CARDANO & EOS.
 
Aion GitHub activity is continuously ranked in top 10 platforms on Darpal Rating and CryptoMiso. Github activity, along with commits quality, are important metrics that get overlooked all the time when people compare Aion to other projects based on number of telegram users. Ethereum & Neo never even had telegram... Fat Protocol Ecosystems are not built by telegram hype but rather by worldwide Dev meetups & armies of developers that can build or contribute something that can change the world.
 
5. AION PR & Marketing are shifting into high gears now that the Mainnet is live. AIONEX, EDCON & CONSENSUS 2018 have put AION on the radar of the media. Matt Spoke is slowly becoming crypto's poster boy as seen on RBC's Disruptors Panel. It's only a matter of time before the mainstream media finds out about AION.
 
6. AION is introducing Real Technological Break-throughs with the first Cross-Chain bridge that completely moves tokens seamlessly between different blockchains using the Burn/Mint mechanism, unlike all Dapp platform projects since Ethereum that are still simple blockchain 2.0 platforms with no cross-chain capability or Atomic Swap projects that only transfer value between chains, but come with major limitations.
 
Another important point that gets forgotten in the Aion vs other interoperability projects is that Aion is all these 3 things at the same time:
 
AION is increasingly recognized as the leader of Interoperability —the holy grail of blockchain tech— that will solve scalability, privacy & isolation issues to unlock the true potential of Distributed Ledger Technologies. "This is the internet, decentralized."
 
7. METCALFE’s LAW states that the value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system (n2). This was proven repeatedly in the growth patterns of fat protocols like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Neo. Metcalfe’s Law favors interoperability projects even more, because Aion native tokens have utility far beyond the main Aion-1 blockchain:
 
8. Major AION Partners & Clients like Deloitte, TMX group (Canada's largest stock exchange), Moog Space & Defense Group, Vodafone, TD Bank, etc... are slowly moving their blockchain infrastructure to AION blockchain as they announced at AIONEX conference. This is taking place & growing the AION ecosystem while other Dapp platforms are rushing to parade their new Dapp ICOs that have little to no legitimate need for blockchain tech in the first place, but were rushed to launch ICOs to simply boast their Dapp numbers & suck more ICO funds from unsuspecting investors.
 
9. Future Partnerships will be relatively easy for AION to acquire given AION team's role as a founding board member of the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance, with the likes of Microsoft, Intel & JP Morgan (not just a regular EEA member like most other crypto projects) & the Blockchain Research Institute.
 
Aion cofounder Matthew Spoke has also strong credentials as the Fintech Advisor for the Ontario Securities Commission & Ministry of Finance and as a cofounder of the Muskoka Group along with the Tapscotts & Ethereum cofounder & ConsenSys founder Joeseph Lubin.
 
Not to mention Aion's unmatched advisory board from TMX group VP & Board of Directors and connections to Ethereum cofounders; Anthony Di lorio, Joeseph Lubin, Vitalik who's an advisor to Nuco.io & his father Dmitry Buterin who's an Angel investor in Nuco.io the company building Aion.
 
10. The TRS is coming to an end soon; however, the end of the token release schedule will slowly starts to get priced in long before the last release of Nov 2018; the date after which no more Aion will be released to public ever. Only mining/staking rewards will continue thereafter. The TRS also helps AION market cap climb up the MarketCap list with every release, adding to the increasing visibility & exposure that AION is getting.
 
People have seen what happened to fat protocols like Ethereum, Neo & Cardano, but it takes a special breed of people (and a bit of luck) to foresee why AION will have a much bigger growth & impact potential on the entire crypto space. (This is not a financial advice. DYOR.)
submitted by Unleash-The-Kraken to AionNetwork [link] [comments]

After ICON the next and only ICO, Don Tapscott is an advisor for, Jibrel Network - Why I think its the sleeping giant and why you should have a look at this project. Thoughts below.

Jibrel Network Settle in boys, this is a long one. I am about to tell you about one of the most promising projects/ICOs of this year, the Jibrel Network.
What does it do? Essentially, the Jibrel Network provides currencies, equities, commodities and other financial assets and instruments as ERC-20 tokens and puts them on the blockchain. It does that to provide incomparable liquidity and decrease friction costs. Additionally, it automates certain processes such as dividend distribution and so on.
The Jibrel Network has a native token, known as JNT, which will be used as the ‘liquid’ underlying asset of the Jibrel AG fund’s portfolio. Additionally, it is a deflationary currency because every time JNT is used as jGas (transfer of ownership; purchase of tokenized assets) it is burned.
>Wait, I’ve heard this before, with LAtoken and Veratesium, this is a tried and tested scam.
Previous attempts at the market didn't have what Jibrel have – smart regulation and insured 2-way (i.e. physical asset to tokens, tokens to physical assets liquidity). All financial assets will be tokenized as programmable CryDRs, which would entail no regulatory or legal risks whatsoever. And, why does this make it better than all the others? Due to the Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations involved in trading real-world assets, there also exists an investor registry that only allows for certain CryDRs to be traded amongst addresses that have been verified by Jibrel. Meaning that, for example, only brokers and fund managers can interact in certain ways with the network. In the traditional economy, regulation is placed around certain asset classes to manage fraud, market, credit and systemic risk. Currencies, commodities and securities all have different regulations across different jurisdictions. The Jibrel Network team has worked (and continues to work) tirelessly with their regulatory advisors to translate real-world regulation into smart regulation (Solidity code). These things will update in near real time as regulation laws and rules amend, so will the smart contract.
>Pfft, where’s the proof?
Well they’re bringing out a MVP usable by any type of user. jWallet and jCash (or jFiat)! Any supposed Tether scams are now dead in the water as we have real, audited tokenized fiat currency. In 6 different forms, no less! Who audits this? The Swiss offices of PricewaterhouseCoopers (doing business under the brand PwC), one of the Big 4 auditing/accounting firms. They will check Jibrel’s position of financial performance and position, cash flows, and other subtle aspects of their financial activities. PwC audits will be public and sufficiently frequent (most likely biannual). The actual code itself? Already been audited by New Alchemy – leaders in smart contract auditing, so that’s all functional.1
jCash is simple enough, It’s Tether but legitimate and in 6 different currencies right off the bat. jUSD, jEUR, jCNY, jAED, jRUB and jGBP. Any fiat currency can be implemented (as long as there is enough demand to implement it). Additionally, Jibrel will always be able to cover their liabilities due to the 3-4x assets in excess of liabilities. Not only that, but the Jibrel DAO (when it activates) will self-regulate the fund through different rules and scenarios encoded in the smart contract – a completely decentralised, on-chain bank.
The real work of art, jWallet The jWallet does all the transaction signing, all the key storage, etc. locally - you never have to share your private keys, they never leave your browser. You can even store them in the browser cache.
It doesn't make sense to share your keys with a service (you login with email) - there are no benefits to that. It’s strange to store large sums of money in a Chrome extension.
https://techcrunch.com/2017/11/22/with-ethereum-wallets-under-constant-attack-jibrel-network-decided-to-build-their-own/
But wait, there's more, when it is up and going, The Jibrel DAO will act as an artificial trading curb, meaning that if the price sinks too low too fast, the DAO will kick in and buy up any oversold JNT, which would equate to roughly 50%. Same thing if it rises too quickly, obvs whale pnd, its curbing it! But there’s only one real downside to that.. unfortunately, this won’t be implemented for quite a while. Target is Q4 2018 for DAO being implemented and a few months (could be up to 6 months) after to be really kicked into gear. Why waiting so long after implementation? Well that’s because DAO needs to build up a buffer to be safe during it’s operation, Jibrel devs are smart and they know DAO cannot be fully operational right off the bat without any serious precautions.
>That sounds great, I’ll wait until after ICO when it dumps ;)
No mate, not with this buying pressure. Jibrel is very investor focused (see partnerships) and will be listing itself on as many exchanges as possible, with two exchanges being in the top 5 in volume (The CEO,Yazan won't say which, most likely HitBTC and a mystery second). Additionally, new jCash will be rolled out all the time, every new currency would be a new audience that’s getting exposed to this company as stated above.
But ultimately you don’t have to invest, they can do it with or without you. This is for banks and other financial institutions. With the infrastructure Jibrel is implementing, banks can save up to 25 billion dollars a year. .
Banks will be able to interact with their own digital assets, completely free of all the legal hassle they had before, while still being perfectly above board. It’s also recession proof. Any trader convinced that another GFC is coming doesn’t have to be purely cash anymore. Its protected by reducing systemic risk in its ecosystem, (through separation, Close monitoring, regulation and risk assessment being the Basel III regulatory framework). Again don’t worry, this is all covered in its smart regulation.
Also note the ICO is not paired with ETH like many ICO's. 1 ETH = x amount of tokens. Due to volatility of the tokens its ICO is pegged at 0.25 cents offer. So if ETH is high or BTC is high you will get more tokens. This makes much better sense as a token structure and why I believe it hasn't sold out yet, a lot of people are waiting in the sidelines.
Now for the juicy part (in case previous parts weren’t juicy enough for you thirsty kids), the advisors and partnerships:
They have freaking Eddy Zuaiter as an advisor, the ex-COO of Soros fund management chatting with them. The man who oversaw 2.5 billion dollars worth of trade positions joined jibrel because:
  1. He sees Jibrel as an opportunity to learn more about the space
  2. He sees Jibrel as an opportunity to directly be involved, help them be well capitalized, survive the bubble, and grow. He sees the potential to pull off an Amazon (his words).
The second is Don Tapscott, the MVP himself. This man has been throwing the term “digital currency” around since 1995, don’t listen to me prattle on, go watch one of his TED talks.
The Jibrel Network is engaged with New Alchemy for Security Audits and PwC for financial audits. In addition, we have formed a strategic agreement with Arabian Chain to bring smart regulation to MENA markets (Middle east) , as well as TaaS fund to provide smart tokens (CryDRs). Jibrel AG is a registered entity in Zug, Switzerland and is responsible for the development of the network. The Jibrel team have undertaken the necessary legal and compliance measures to ensure a fully compliant token sale. For this reason, certain jurisdictions such as US, Singapore and China will not be allowed to participate in the token sale. ;) ICO is 28 million HARD CAP- Yazan has put extra emphasis on this
Lastly, in case you brush it off as an ethereum network scamcoin? It’s blockchain agnostic. If there’s a new king in town, Jibrel can hop on over to it!
Let us know if you have any further questions https://web.telegram.org/#/[email protected]_network
http://sale.jibrel.network
ICO rating websites :
https://icobench.com/ico/jibrel-network
https://icorating.com/ico/432/
https://www.icoranker.com/jibrel-network/- 98/100
More info:
http://vator.tv/news/2017-12-07-jibrel-network-announces-partnership-with-bitcoin-suisse
https://medium.com/@curiousinvestojibrel-network-enabling-investors-e004c9ca7605
submitted by staskies to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

Detailed thoughts/research on ICON. (Updates)

Reposting this with some updates. Originally posted to this sub 3+ months ago when there were fewer than 100 subs. I am more bullish on ICX than ever before and plan on increasing my position via OKEx, possibly doubling my 30 Eth position depending on how low the price drops. Thoughts on price: I don't give a lot of credence to the HitBTC futures but I DO pay attention to the trend they reflect. I've seen many ICOs with futures trading below the ICO price. ICX is currently at a crazy premium. Will ICX trade at >$3 on day 1? I don't think so. But I'm willing to bet good money (and will bet good money) that it will trade well north of $3 within the next few months assuming we don't have another massive market correction. My two cents.
One piece of advice to the ICON team: Pay more attention to this sub than you do to Telegram. Make announcements here. It will get to the Telegram almost instantly while remaining visible (instead of having to "pin" posts on Telegram) and easily searchable in the future. We need this subreddit to grow. Thanks!
New information marked with "UPDATE:"
Website:
https://icon.foundation/en/
Team:
On the site. Lots of folks that went to the best Universities in Korea (Seoul National is the Harvard of Korea, KAIST is the MIT of Korea). Lots of American educated folks too. Biz guys that worked for top tier investment banks (JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank).
Parent Company:
ICON is a project of Dayli Financial Group. Dayli used to be called Yello Financial Group and it is an arm of Yello Mobile. (Techcrunch source) (Article about name change) Note that theloop is the company that built the underlying blockchain technology. They are also owned by Dayli Financial Group. It appears many Korean companies take this "conglomerate" approach which has made research a bit tricky. In summary, Dayli Financial Group, Icon Foundation, theloop, Yello Financial Group all the same company.
Furthermore -- Yello Mobile is HUGE. They are one of the largest startups in Korea with a valuation north of $4b. (Source) We're talking about the largest mobile start up in Korea...a start-up that was started by a team that spun off of Kakao, the most popular app in Korea that almost everyone uses (similar to WhatsApp or WeChat in China). Confused yet? Basically, by Korean standards, this is as big as it gets.
Vision
UPDATE: I wanted to throw in something I've heard one of the ICON Council members say many times in interviews on Youtube. They view blockchain networks akin to cellular networks. There will be many of them, they will be regulated, and there will be incredibly successful regional networks in addition to international networks. ICON is the first blockchain network in Korea focusing on pulling that country towards blockchain adoption (see article linked at the bottom of this post). They're setting up dozens of partnerships and side chains that they're building themselves for clients with the goal of connecting the entire ecosystem using ICX. This is a BIG vision that, in my opinion, makes a ton of sense. ICON isn't just saying, "Here's our network, come use it" -- they're signing up industries and those industries are paying up for their own blockchain networks that will become part of the ICON ecosystem. We haven't really seen something this "professionalized" in crypto yet, besides perhaps Ripple.
Partnerships/Other:
ICO Terms:
150k Eth, first round caps you at 30 eth per person, then 100 eth, then 1,000 eth. I maxed the pre-sale and am planning on doubling down assuming I get a reasonable price discovery here in the next few days.
Advisors:
Don Tapscott is the big one. He wrote one of the definitive books on blockchain with his son who runs a crypto hedge fund. Here's him speaking. Here's his son Alex speaking at Google. Here's a Bloomberg article that mentions their investment.
UPDATE: They also added Jehan Chu as an advisor. He's a pretty big deal and has been around the space for a LONG time. Here he is on Bloomberg TV mentioning South Korea. He doesn't mention ICON (and does mention two other investments) but I'll give him a pass given that he's on an American TV show.
Other:
Korea is obsessed with crypto (based on trading volumes) and they are early adopters of nearly every new technology -- usually way before China or the US.
Other Articles:
READ THIS ARTICLE (page 2 has best info)
submitted by tatitude to helloicon [link] [comments]

SAPE Inc. wrote a quick review on Jibrel Network

Jibrel Network
Name:
According to Muslim belief, God revealed the Quran to the Islamic prophet Muhammad through the angel Ǧibrīl - (Gabriel in English) This divine messenger was the emissary of God who connected the heavens to the terrestrial plane. In choosing the name Jibrel, the project leaders aim to be the bridging point between the earth, i.e contemporary traditional finance, and the heavens: finance of the future conducted on the blockchain.
Team:
-Talal Tabbaa(Co-founder, Business Development Leader): Is a part part of the founding team having graduated as an industrial engineer from Purdue university. His professional career prior to Jibrel involves financial advisory with Price Waterhouse Cooper and managing a private Saudi investment fund for a member of the royal family (~3 Bn AUM).
-Yazan Barghutti(Co-founder, Project Lead): Yazan is a UCL chemical engineer whose previous roles centred around management consultancy and data science spheres within the Oliver Wyman and Deloitte organisations. He has advised assets of over 1 trillion $ and has extensive experience in capital and financial markets in the US and GCC. He has extensive experience in capital and finance markets within the USA and GCC, managing assets over 1 trillion dollars in total.
-Victor Mezrin(Co-founder, CTO): Victor graduated with a masters Degree in physics from Moscow State University, and is a veteran in the crypto field having run one of the top 3 mining pools (pool.mn). He has over 10 years technical experience along with proficiency in C++,C, Python, Java, C#, PHP, JavaScript and solidity programming languages.
-Hamzeh Kolaghassi(Operations Lead): Hamzeh graduated from Marymount University and started working in the financial field as a financial advisor and investment manager in 2011.
-Nick Marinin: (UX/UI dev)

-Aleksey Selikhov Developer (Back-end)

-Ivan Violentov Developer (Front-end)

-Nikita Shchipanov (Web Analyst)

-Rust Khusyainov (Illustrator)

-Aleksey Smirnov (DevOps Engineer)

-Yuriy Homyakov Developer (Back-end)

-Nikita Shchipanov (Web Analyst)

-Anna Bordunova (Public Relations)

Further recruitment was confirmed in May 2018.
Advisors: -Don Tapscott: This legendary investor, business manager and author has become a big name in the blockchain scene in recent years, being best known for his consulting position on the ICON project and his bestselling book, The Blockchain Revolution. Tapscott’s authship is by no means limited to cryptocurrency and his book Wikinomics was a bestseller on the business book charts. -Moe Levin: Levin is also an all-star of the crypto scene. Since 2013 he organizes conferences for all industry representatives. His keynote conferences are among the most influential in the industry and he hold advisory positions on many promising projects. -Abbaz Zuaiter, Zuaiter was Chief Operating Officer of Soros Fund Management between 2002 and 2013. -Ruslan Gavrilyuk (CryptoFinance Advisor CEO & Founder of TaaS Fund) -Saul Hudson (Communications Advisor, GM at Thomson Reuters) -Mohammad Al Sehli (MENA Advisor, CEO & Founder of Arabian Chain)
If one was to compare the panel of advisors for each and every project in cryptocurrency, The Jibrel Network’s board of advisors would certainly be within the top 1 percentile. They have struck the right balance in their blend of experts within blockchain and within he world of conventional finance, so that the project is connected to every area of business and finance it needs to be in order to develop the vision of the founders. A perfect example of this is Don Tapscott’s presentation to Bank of England in March 2018 where he extolled the virtues of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
ICO: The ICO ran from 27/11/2017, to 27/12/2017, ending weeks before it was supposed to, and saw all 155 million ERC-20 JNT tokens sold at a price fixed at 0.25 USD. Both Bitcoin and Ethereum were accepted during the token sale in addition to fiat contributions facilitated by Bitcoin Suisse AG. The revenues in Bitcoin and Ethereum were sold immediately after the ICO (at $ 300 an ether and $ 4500 for a bitcoin) to avoid speculation with investors' funds. The remaining 45 million JNTs that have been withheld are paid out to the team after 3-5 years. The extreme length of the token locking period for team members shows the huge amount of confidence that the project leaders have in this project.
Vision:
In order to understand the vision of Jibrel in more detail, one must look at the state of the contemporary financial system. On the one hand, we have classic investment products such as bonds, gold, real estate, company shares and Fiat. Let's take a look at how transactions involving traditional assets will operate. Currently, we have a concentration of power where individual financial intermediaries clear the transactions for high fees. In addition, 2 billion people worldwide have no access to traditional banking and therefore rely on service providers MoneyGram or Western Union for international remittances.
The fees involved in transactions using Western Union for example can be exhorbitant and sometimes prohibitive. Other negative aspects of these kinds of service providers are the lengthy wait for transactions to clear and the effect of weekends and bank holidays on service operations. Through use of blockchain technology it is possible to avoid all of these negative aspects of current payment systems and transfer value in an extremely cheap safe and speedy manner, with possession of a mobile device being the only necessity within this new method of transacting.
However, the volatility risk is not to be understated. If we put ourselves in the position of a manual laborer from India who works in Dubai and earns just enough to send $ 100 a month to his family back home, we can better analyse the advantages and disadvantages of each form of transaction . For various reasons, be it regulations, the length of stay or simply because of the associated fees, the worker has no bank account with which he can transfer the money. The only way to send money free of volatility and without being tied to a bank account is to pay the approximate $10 processing fee to a service provider like Western Union, a fee which can mean 10-15% less cash sent home to relatives.. The cheaper and faster alternative would be to buy $100 worth of cryptocurrencies in Dubai and to make a simple blockchain transaction to send the corresponding value in rupees back to India. At first glance, this may seem like a more attractive alternative but drawbacks such as price volatility as well as tax and legal implications must be considered. The value of the cryptocurrency purchased may fluctuate by as much as 10% between purchase in Dubai and receipt in Indian and the resulting profit could be subject to capital gains tax.
Products:
The Jibrel Network’s range of products are aimed at tackling problems such as the scenario described above as well as many other inefficiencies and failings in the current financial system. The first and most significant of these the Crypto Depository Receipt (CryDR) builds on the existing depository receipt instrument in order to facilitate global transactions involving currencies or securities. The total volume of depository receipts issued in 2016 was $2.9 trillion which shows the potential magnitude of the endeavour the project founders are undertaking.
For example, Jibrel, in collaboration with central banks, will initially issue $USD, AED and KRW on the Ethereum Blockchain as so-called jCash tokens. Which can then be purchased in exchange for the JNT token. For our example, this means that the worker in Dubai buys the JNT token and then sends it to Jibrel. In return, he receives dirham tokens, so-called jAED in the same value. The tokens he receives remain stable in value regardless of market volatility, allowing them to be used as a potential means of payment weeks later, or to be converted back to fiat currency. Besides the peer-to-peer crypto-fiat JCash initiative, The Jibrel Network plans to tokenize a great many other financial instruments as CryDRs, such as bonds, gold, company shares and real estate. At present, there are many pilots on going between Jibrel and distinguished institutions that are in future make use of the technology. Jordan's Central Bank and the DFSA (Dubai's Financial Service Authority) are known to be taking part as in pilots we speak. Moreover, Talal confirmed at a conference that a central bank of one Europe nation is also piloting with Jibrel, however the name of the country has not been made public yet.
Use cases:
The issuance of shares by CryDR will be piloted usually in cooperation with a venture capital firm. In the future, cost-intensive IPOs of small companies can be replaced by the issuance of CryDRs, which can then be acquired with the JNT token. According to Jibrel founders, registering and trading real estate on the blockchain proves to be a difficult proposition. There are numerous bureaucratic obstacles that must be traversed and legislative progression to be made by the respective governmental entities of individual countries before the trading of land or real estate is possible on the blockchain. Some countries are committed to the introduction of blockchain technologies on a wide scale which will run parallel to their current systems and eventually may replace them, which will allow the trade of real estate to flourish in future. The United Arab Emirates, for example, has announced that the country's primary goal is to largely replace the bureaucracy by 2020 with the use of blockchains.
Bigger picture:
It is important to clarify the economic implications associated with the issuance of assets on the blockchain. A small business IPO can cost up to 500000 USD and involve regulatory hurdles that prohibit the majority of small time investors from participating. Alternatively, it was possible for companies seeking funding to be funded by venture capital. Liquidity and access to risk capital has so far been limited due to the lack of an open and transparent risk capital market. The increased liquidity provided by blockchain technology enables company shares and real estate to be traded worldwide in the smallest of volumes, with an internet connection being the only prerequisite for inclusion in the system. Extensive new opportunities are now available to investors, startups and estate agents. For example, a construction project or a start-up can be financed by several thousand investors, who then count as legal owners of the property / start-up. In this innovative system entrepreneurs are less reliant on the capital provided by a few large investors, with the investor base expanded. Furthermore, the "smart regulation" of the tokens allows the automated cash flow between the creditors and debtors, so, for example, rent payments of the tenants can automatically be paid in the form of jcash to the owners. This phenomenon of global financial inclusion is why ICOs have become the most popular startup fundraising tool - now Jibrel will attempt to transfer the liquidity and egalitarian benefits of using a blockchain to the classic economy.
Token Economics:
In general, one has to ask the question in blockchain projects whether a separate token is necessary or whether the decentralization goal of the project makes sense The ultimate goal of Jibrel is to be a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) that manages the operational business without human influence through smart contracts. The Jibrel founders use the story of Pinocchio as a metaphor for their future development. Currently Jibrel is still a wooden doll that needs a puppeteer, which in this case is still the team. As soon as all regulatory and technical preparations have been made, Jibrel, like Pinocchio, is freed from the strings of it’s puppeteers and acts autonomously. The founders hope that at the end of this process the first decentralized bank will have been born.
Now, the question arises as to why the Jibrel Network uses its own token to secure values ​​rather than using an established cryptocurrency. For one thing, Jibrel is not the typical project based on short-term hype cycles and wants to maintain the the most stringent levels of legal compliance possible. The commitment to legal compliance is an essential requirement for any company seeking to operate in the financial services industry and was the core reason for the company making Switzerland the country within which to base its operations. Switzerland is one of the few countries that make high demands on projects but also gives a clear regulatory framework within which to operate. These include commitment to KYC, AML and other legal guidelines that emphasize the trustworthiness of the project. The issuance of a separate token allows the Jibrel organisation to maintain an independent legal compliance record which would not be possible if Jibrel were to take Ethereum as a collateral in the conducting of its operations. If the Ether token was used in place of the Jibrel Network Token the whole Jibrel project would be at the mercy of the regulatory health of the Ethereum Project, over which it would have no control. Similarly the stability of the Jibrel Project would be subject to the extremely volatile cryptocurrency market’s valuation of the Ether token, which would be disastrous for investor confidence.
The solvency, and thus the disbursement ability of the organization is achieved by depositing the CryDR using its own JNT token. If you wish to tokenize an asset the Jibrel DAO removes the captured JNT from circulation, decreasing the amount of JNT in circulation and consequently increasing the value of all remaining circulating JNT. If an asset is liquidated the previously locked up JNT are brought back into the market. In order to increase the number of tokens owned by the organization, Jibrel will provide its own products and services that charge the fee in the form of the JNT Token. One of the most important of these products is the jWallet, a cryptocurrency wallet with a far superior user interface and performance of its competitors. The alpha of the jWallet was published before the ICO and the beta version is in development with an expected release date of around the end of Q2.
Probably the most interesting and urgently needed product in the field of infrastructure is the blockchain explorer jSearch, which allows the user to view transactions on all blockchains. Existing solutions such as etherscan.io or etherchain.org provide only rudimentary insight and an unsatisfactory user experience. For example, jSearch can be used as a tool to search, filter and bookmark already-issued assets. It is safe to infer rom all the information available that the Jibrel Network is a serious startup attempting to ensure long term solvency by exploring alternative sources of revenue. The resulting Jibrel ecosystem will eventually become in a sense an isolated market within which the performance of other cryptocurrencies plays no role.
challenges:
The implementation of such a paradigm shift will naturally see many hurdles and challenges present themselves. The project stands and falls with the speculative volatility of the market, which can act so irrationally that the buffers of the deposits are not sufficient to counteract the undervaluation and the solvency of the organization is no longer ensured. For example, Jibrel announced that the first product, jCash, will initially only be deposited off-chain due to market volatility, meaning that for the time being no deposit of JNT is required to issue Fiat. As soon as volatility on the market decreases and Jibrel has enough equity to compensate for any shortfalls, all CryDRs will need a JNT deposit as this is the only way to ensure full decentralization of the organization. However, mechanisms such as off-chain / on-chain arbitrage ensure that undervaluation of assets is prevented. In order to get the most realistic token value, Jibrel is currently developing its own blockchain to decouple itself from the Ethereum blockchain and the events on the market. The in-house blockchain jCore is currently under development. Details on the consensus algorithm and the release date will be announced.
Milestones:
-SEED backing/ Office
-Jordan
-JWallet
-EEA
-VQF
-DSFA in Dubai
-MAMA
submitted by Crillus to JibrelNetwork [link] [comments]

How to follow, study and keep up to date with the Ethereum project. This info or link might help with newbies or people you would like to send info to regarding what ethereum is.

Iv been asked to put together some info / links on the Ethereum Project by a few people lately that iv met or talked to and since its Sunday and i got a half day from work here it is:
I emailed them and then pasted it here so sorry if its a bit clumped together. Cant get the grasp of how reddit breaks up sentances 8-()
https://www.ethereum.org/ Ethereum is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third party interference.
These apps run on a custom built blockchain, an enormously powerful shared global infrastructure that can move value around and represent the ownership of property. This enables developers to create markets, store registries of debts or promises, move funds in accordance with instructions given long in the past (like a will or a futures contract) and many other things that have not been invented yet, all without a middle man or counterparty risk.
The project was bootstraped via an ether pre-sale during August 2014 by fans all around the world. It is developed by the Ethereum Foundation, a Swiss nonprofit, with contributions from great minds across the globe.
Ethereum Blog: https://blog.ethereum.org/
Note: This is not investment advise, This email is just to show you what Ethereum is, what these 1000's of computer scientists, developers, programmers and hackers are building. A whole new internet run from millions of peoples computers all over the world to create the "Ethereum Virtual Machine" or world computer that 7 Billion people can log onto at the same time. It is censorship resistant, encrypted and the Ethereum Blockchain can not be hacked. This is going to change the world as we know it.
There is a built in currency called "Ether" or "ETH" and can be purchased from any of many exchanges listed below.
Note 2: ETC or Ethereum Classic is a smaller blockchain project that also uses the EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) and id advise to stay away from that project, it has not got the 1000's of developers building it like ETH does, it apparently has one or 2 developers that went their own way, The EVM can also run private and consortium blockchains that alot of big and small companies are building on for their inhouse private operations. Like a Intranet (intranet is a private network that is contained within an enterprise)
Its very hard to understand at first what exactly blockchain is so here are some videos that i think explains it well:
BBC 2015 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0X33lgMbvdI
Ethereum: the World Computer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j23HnORQXvs
An Ethereum Interview Series // Teaser from the recent Devcon2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHseIdJ0SJU
What is Ethereum? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Clw-qf1sUZg&t=123s
ETHEREUM explained in 100 seconds. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRDKP8nCVtU
Vitalik Buterin explains Ethereum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TDGq4aeevgY
DEVCON1: Understanding the Ethereum Blockchain Protocol - Vitalik Buterin
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjwr-7PgpN8
2016 China Devcon2: Ethereum in 25 Minutes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66SaEDzlmP4&t=1s
Joseph Lubin - The Basics of Blockchain and Etherum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ilYnuP1qd4&t=50s
DEVCON1: Ethereum for Dummies - Dr. Gavin Wood https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_LK0t_qaPo
Blockchain is Eating Wall Street | Alex Tapscott | https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnEYakUxsHU
How the mysterious dark net is going mainstream https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzN4WGPC4kc&t=378s
The four pillars of a decentralized society | Johann Gevers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8oeiOeDq_Nc
Gavin Wood: Why is Blockchain a game changer? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygZWhQXZtl4&t=188s
Brock Pierce: Blockchain technology https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lMvo0PPxjQ&t=619s
2014 Keiser Report: New Crypto Phenomenon Ethereum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdAnyC45ZbU (starts at about 12 mins)
Devcon2 Videos from 2016 https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNOfzGXD_C9YMYmnefmPH0g/videos
Devcon1 and other Ethereum Videos from 2014 & 15 https://www.youtube.com/useethereumproject/videos
Soundcloud: (these are great with Arthur speaking directly to Developers that are building on Ethereum)
The Ether Review - Arthur Falls https://soundcloud.com/arthurfalls
ConsenSys Media - Arthur Falls https://soundcloud.com/consensys
Evan Van Ness sends out "The week in Ethereum" latest here: http://www.weekinethereum.com/
Id highly recommend subscribing to his news letter here http://evanvanness.us14.list-manage1.com/subscribe?u=4c6ec57a148e890524b6ac91f&id=7061f7fa65
Ethereum Rules and Getting Started Guide https://www.reddit.com/ethereum/comments/4ws9um/rethereum_rules_and_getting_started_guide/
Reddit:
https://www.reddit.com/ethereum/new/ News, development and everything apart from price. Most news about Ethereum can be found here daily
https://www.reddit.com/ethtradenew/ price and trading discussions
Ethereum News commentators i watch:
Crypt0 https://www.youtube.com/useobham001/videos
Mr Yukon C https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClfAgeZvfwC9hcJrFisW8cQ/videos
Ethereum people to follow on twitter to get linked and fed important blockchain info:
@SingularDTV @golemproject @ethcoreproject @MrYukonC @EthereumCanada @ConsenSysLLC @R3CEV @DigixGlobal @AugurProject @NickSzabo4 @ethereumJoseph @Gatecoin @aantonop @BobSummerwill @GeorgeAHallam @el33th4xor @awrelllRo @mingchan88 @peter_szilagyi @koeppelmann @LefterisJP @stephantual @wmougayar @jeffehh @TaylorGerring @avsa (there is plenty more i just don't have them on my twitter yet)
To run a node from your computer you can download the "Ethereum Wallet" here: https://github.com/ethereum/mist/releases
Instructions:
How to Install the Ethereum Wallet https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3JfLgjqNU4&t=7s
How to Back up and load the Ethereum Wallet https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZ8ZCtbxD0M&t=2s
How To Watch Tokens and Other Smart Contracts with the Ethereum Wallet https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_KJ84jkPi8
Ethereum and other blockchain project prices http://coinmarketcap.com/
There are many exchanges that trade Ether around the world http://coinmarketcap.com/currencies/ethereum/#markets
Some ones i have used are: www.kraken.com Accepts Euro, Dollar, GBP etc.. by SEPA or international bank transfer and you can buy Ether
www.poloniex.com (does not accept fiat but it is the largest volume for trading crypto pairs, I have used www.bitstamp.net in the UK to buy Bitcoin and then send them to Poloniex to swap for Ether )
www.yunbi.com A very good exchange based in China and have listed a few ethereum tokens, you need to swap through CNY (Chinese Yuan) but its easy and very good support.
www.bittrex.com No Fiat but also lists some Ethereum Based tokens
www.gatecoin.com Based in Hong Kong and you can send Euro and Dollar, Also lists alot of Ethereum Based tokens, Volume is very low at the moment as they recover from a hack but they offer very good support.
The safest place to store you Ether is on a hardware wallet like this one https://www.ledgerwallet.com/products/12-ledger-nano-s.
You can also store all you Ethereum based tokens or shares on this device https://ledger.groovehq.com/knowledge_base/topics/how-to-secure-your-eth-tokens-augur-rep-dot-dot-dot-with-your-nano-s
The way "I view" the incentive to keep Ether (ETH) is the following and the reason i think it will go up in value is because of "The velocity of Ether moving through the Ethereum economy (Platform)". So the more Ether is used the higher the price will get and in a number of years will see us move down to the lower units finney, szabo, shannon, babbage, lovelace, and wei as the digital economy grows. Ether has 18 decimal places 1,000,000,000,000,000,000. Because after POS Ether total supply will be set at approx. 100 Million with a small inflation of 1 to 3% that pays the computers running it.
So ether will be more like the reserve currency and trade currency between all the other currencies, contracts and Dapps interacting in the Ethereum digital economy. But its main function is like a gas to run the network. Every transaction you have to pay a tiny amount to the network that goes to all the computers running the network. less than 1 penny.
Ethereum Based Tokens / Synthetic assets (What is a Synthetic Asset https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=St9DBpNBP1Q)
On coinmarketcap.com you can see there are 642 other Blockchain projects listed and some like Bitcoin are 8 years old. 90%+ of these projects are junk projects developed by 1 or 2 people and are just copies of Bitcoin. Some have added extra functions over Bitcoin and Bitcoin is a very secure but slow payment DAPP but cant do much else besides payments.
Ethereum was built from scratch and is built like lets say "android or a smart phone" so that DAPPS can be plugged in as you should have heard from the above videos. So there are now a good few DAPPS that are nearly completion that were built on the ethereum blockchain by different groups of developers. There are alot more but 328 are listed here: http://dapps.ethercasts.com/. So there is not just 643 blockchain projects there are over 1000 but all the ones on Ethereum can communicate or interoperate with eachother. Some notable ones you can see listed on coinmarketcap are Augur, Iconomi, DigixDAO, Golem, SingularDTV etc..... All these because they are built on the Ethereum blockchain can interact with eachother but the other 600+ blockchains can not. This is what makes Ethereum different from the rest.
As DigixDAO is the one i have studied most ill give an example of a DAPP thats built on Ethereum and why a DAPP would be usefull
In industry most work is automated, the operators no longer have to take process samples manually and send to the lab or go and top up a tank manually with certain additives, This is all done by automation, When the process is at a certain temperate, level, viscosity etc.. the instrumentation measures this and adds or pumps the necessary ingredients / additives to make sure the final product is made correctly. This automation has saved alot of costs and manual labour in industry.
What Digix / blockchain is doing is automating alot of the back office paperwork, accounting, agreements etc... Example: company that owns a gold vault (Like Silver Bullion) have employees handling paperwork / sales etc and when people sell and buy gold it changes hands or changes registered ownership and the employees have to manually do this paperwork. What Digix provides is automated software that does all this automatically in 14 seconds. For billing / storage if you have gold stored in the vault you pay about 1% a year so you know if you have $10,000 worth of gold then you need to pay about $100 a year which you pay by topping up your gold (DGX) by $100 and its taken out automatically each day by a tiny tiny amount.
The good thing is that if you have Gold Tokens as your savings instead of Fiat and you need to borrow $ short term you can borrow $ by agreeing to lock your Gold Tokens in a smart contract in the software and pay interest for that loan. If you pay back the loan over 3 months then the gold tokens are automatically returned to your address and you havent missed a gold rally or a Fiat devaluation. If you dont pay it back then the person who lent you the $ gets all your gold (or the % not paid) Again this process is automated in a smart contract and the bullion employee didnt have to settle all the paperwork, transfers of gold or get contracts and agreements signed by both parties, This is done by digital signature / agreements and saves the Vault operator alot of costs.
The vault operator can also earn a bit of the loans interest and $ can be provided by them or even 3rd parties. Using the Ethereum blockchain this can be done for lots of different industries from banking, stocks, insurance, gambling, pritty much everywhere
Other non Ethereum related Youtube people i follow, mainly Economics, Geo-politics, Gold / Silver etc.... These people give some very good info that you wont get from the big media companies or state media. Maybe this will help you understand why you should not keep 100% of your wealth in $ and maybe a few % is worth keeping in Crypto or ever Gold Physical or easier DGX (DigixDAO) or DGD.
Greg Hunter https://www.youtube.com/useusawatchdog/videos
Gerald Celente Trends in the News https://www.youtube.com/usegcelente/videos
Gregory Mannarino https://www.youtube.com/useGregVegas5909/videos
Realist News Jsnip4 https://www.youtube.com/usejsnip4/videos
SGT Report https://www.youtube.com/useSGTbull07/videos
Stefan molyneux https://www.youtube.com/usestefbot/videos
X22 Report https://www.youtube.com/useX22Report/videos
Clif High https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=clif+high
Noem Chomsky https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=noem+chomsky
Health
Dr John Bergman https://www.youtube.com/usejohnbchiro/videos
Nutrition Facts Org https://www.youtube.com/useNutritionFactsOrg/videos
Any questions just ask
submitted by TonyMcCarp to ethereum [link] [comments]

Detailed thoughts/research on ICON (i.e. Korean Ethereum). Being listed today on OKEx and Binance. (Super bullish on this one, I'd love some comments for/against.)

I am more bullish on ICX than ever before and plan on increasing my position via OKEx, possibly doubling my 30 Eth position depending on how low the price drops. Thoughts on price: I don't give a lot of credence to the HitBTC futures but I DO pay attention to the trend they reflect. I've seen many ICOs with futures trading below the ICO price. ICX is currently at a crazy premium. Will ICX trade at >$3 on day 1? I don't think so. But I'm willing to bet good money (and will bet good money) that it will trade well north of $3 within the next few months assuming we don't have another massive market correction. My two cents.
New information in the last few months marked with "UPDATE:"
Website:
https://icon.foundation/en/
Team:
On the site. Lots of folks that went to the best Universities in Korea (Seoul National is the Harvard of Korea, KAIST is the MIT of Korea). Lots of American educated folks too. Biz guys that worked for top tier investment banks (JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank).
Parent Company:
ICON is a project of Dayli Financial Group. Dayli used to be called Yello Financial Group and it is an arm of Yello Mobile. (Techcrunch source) (Article about name change) Note that theloop is the company that built the underlying blockchain technology. They are also owned by Dayli Financial Group. It appears many Korean companies take this "conglomerate" approach which has made research a bit tricky. In summary, Dayli Financial Group, Icon Foundation, theloop, Yello Financial Group all the same company.
Furthermore -- Yello Mobile is HUGE. They are one of the largest startups in Korea with a valuation north of $4b. (Source) We're talking about the largest mobile start up in Korea...a start-up that was started by a team that spun off of Kakao, the most popular app in Korea that almost everyone uses (similar to WhatsApp or WeChat in China). Confused yet? Basically, by Korean standards, this is as big as it gets.
Vision
UPDATE: I wanted to throw in something I've heard one of the ICON Council members say many times in interviews on Youtube. They view blockchain networks akin to cellular networks. There will be many of them, they will be regulated, and there will be incredibly successful regional networks in addition to international networks. ICON is the first blockchain network in Korea focusing on pulling that country towards blockchain adoption (see article linked at the bottom of this post). They're setting up dozens of partnerships and side chains that they're building themselves for clients with the goal of connecting the entire ecosystem using ICX. This is a BIG vision that, in my opinion, makes a ton of sense. ICON isn't just saying, "Here's our network, come use it" -- they're signing up industries and those industries are paying up for their own blockchain networks that will become part of the ICON ecosystem. We haven't really seen something this "professionalized" in crypto yet, besides perhaps Ripple.
Partnerships/Other:
ICO Terms:
150k Eth, first round caps you at 30 eth per person, then 100 eth, then 1,000 eth. I maxed the pre-sale and am planning on doubling down assuming I get a reasonable price discovery here in the next few days.
Advisors:
Don Tapscott is the big one. He wrote one of the definitive books on blockchain with his son who runs a crypto hedge fund. Here's him speaking. Here's his son Alex speaking at Google. Here's a Bloomberg article that mentions their investment.
UPDATE: They also added Jehan Chu as an advisor. He's a pretty big deal and has been around the space for a LONG time. Here he is on Bloomberg TV mentioning South Korea. He doesn't mention ICON (and does mention two other investments) but I'll give him a pass given that he's on an American TV show.
Other:
Korea is obsessed with crypto (based on trading volumes) and they are early adopters of nearly every new technology -- usually way before China or the US.
Other Articles:
READ THIS ARTICLE (page 2 has best info)
submitted by tatitude to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

Scam Projects

Hello!
My name is Kristina Semenova, I am the Head of Investors Relation Department at Platinum, the world’s number one business facilitator.
Our team knows how to start ICO/STO in 2019!
Why are we so sure? Well, our experience speaks for itself:
Platinum.fund
But what is the difference between ico and sto? What is the cornerstone of ICO marketing strategy? You will know this after finishing the UBAI courses!
Here’s just a quick preview of our Short Course lesson.
Real World Examples
Multinational accounting firm Ernst and Young found that $400 million of the $3.7 billion USD raised from ICOs (as of January 22, 2018) had been stolen. That is, up to 10% of all ICO funding is virtually being stolen from investors. Though ICO scams are the most common method of theft in the crypto world, some projects will actually operate for a period of time before disappearing with the money. Like in a Ponzi scheme, an exit scam may be planned for later, sometime after a manipulated pump; or some other time the team believes is most opportune to take the money and run. Giza: Giza marketed itself as a platform within which different cryptocurrencies could be stored securely. But after raising $2.4 million in one month, the team deleted the website and stopped replying to emails. Investors were duped by a very convincing whitepaper, and actors had been hired to appear in photographs promoting the project. No investor funds have ever been recovered. Centra: The SEC put an end to fundraising for the Centra ICO and charged the founders Robert Farkas and Sohrab Sharma with orchestrating a fraudulent ICO after they raised $32 million USD. They were promoting the ability to develop financial products backed by VISA and Mastercard, though it was later found that neither partnership was real. One of the major red flags in the Centra project was the use of celebrity endorsements for publicity, reportedly paying champion boxer Floyd Mayweather a significant sum to promote their project. Who wants to leave their Blockchain investment decisions up to Floyd Mayweather, regardless of his unbelievable skill as a boxer and regardless of his own financial success? He should still not influence where you invest your money!
Ponzi Schemes: Bitconnect: This is the most infamous Ponzi scheme in the history of cryptocurrency, and certainly the most damaging. Bitconnect was a Bitcoin-based project that rose to an all-time high of $463 per token on the back of a fictitious trading bot. The Bitconnect scam operated by paying dividends to users, proportional to the number of tokens they held and the number of referrals they made. The BCC tokens were exchanged for the users’ Bitcoin, and the highly sophisticated and wildly successful trading bot would trade BTC for them and distribute profits as dividends. The value of the dividends offered was approximately 1% of the initial investment per day. In other words, that is approximately 3,780% per year in cumulative gain! The referral system was capitalized upon most heavily by many of the biggest crypto YouTube channels, including CryptoNick and Trevon James, both of whom are now under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Shortly after the Bitconnect Token reached its all-time high, they received cease and desist orders from the security regulators of Texas and North Carolina, which caused the owners of the Bitconnect exchange to shut down operations, and the price to plummet.
Davorcoin: Davorcoin was a lending platform very similar to Bitconnect. And Davorcoin was farcically promoted by the same Trevon James crypto Youtuber who promoted Bitconnect, and is currently under investigation by the FBI for promoting Ponzi schemes. The Texas State Securities Board, in likening Davor to Bitconnect, stated that “DavorCoin is telling investors they can earn lucrative profits by investing in a lending program based on a new cryptocurrency known as davorcoin. Investors allegedly purchase davorcoin and then lend it to DavorCoin”. Davorcoin promptly plunged from an all-time high of $180 to very close to zero after a cease and desist order was made against them on the 2nd of February 2018. Useless Ethereum Token: Despite brazenly stating in the name of the project that the token has no use, the UET managed to raise $340,000 in its crowdsale, and saw a significant pump of over 300% on the HitBTC exchange in February of 2018. The scam was an obvious case of pump and dump, with the total trading volume for UET crashing back down to as low as $3 per day, after reaching as high as $350,000 per day during the pump.
It is currently an unfortunate consequence of the decentralized nature of cryptocurrency, but there is a distinct lack of recourse for scammed investors. It is wise to become as well-acquainted with the various indicators of good and bad ICOs as you possibly can. In weighing the factors that will allow you to avoid expensive mistakes, ask yourself in whose favor are the terms of the ICO slanted, yours or the teams? To what extent are you actually likely to profit from this investment? Cryptocurrency is inherently a grey area, whether you are investing in it or not. Investing is another inherently grey area, no matter what the area or object of investing might be. Laws and regulations are not always able to keep up. Trying to define and prove what was or was not a scam is not likely to be as simple as the scammed investor would want it to be. A project can be set up in certain ways to avoid being technically classified or provable as a scam, but the unprepared investor can still be burnt or scammed just as badly. Now we look at more individual indicators that can help you form a valid impression whether or not an ICO or even a fully-fledged exchange-listed coin is a scam or a bona fide investment opportunity.
Common Signposts
Contrasting Scam & Legitimate Projects
Presale Bonus/Token Release If the ICO allots massive bonuses to team members, you may leave yourself open to getting dumped on by presale investors if you buy when the project tokens are listed on an exchange. Likewise, if the project has a short lock-up period for developers and founders, you run the risk of them selling as soon as the token is listed on a major exchange. The token release schedule for the founders of a worthwhile project should show long-term team commitment to that project. The Jibrel Network team tokens will be locked up for 5 years before release, and they had no early investor bonus in the main sale. Both of these factors instilled confidence in the JNT ICO investors, and the tokens were sold out weeks before the ICO was due to end. No Presale lock up If Presale investor tokens are not locked up at all for any period after listing, that could easily be a set up for an exit scam after the initial listing. No presale lockup for early investor tokens is a crystal clear warning, the project may be fatally rigged toward those in the inner circle, with little commitment to the long term health or success of that project.
Unsolicited Offers or Unasked for Additions to Groups Characters running scam projects will often add you to Telegram groups out of the blue or send you unsolicited emails with information about their project. Telegram is the most widely used messaging app in the cryptocurrency community and you should familiarize yourself with it to keep yourself in the loop for specific projects in which you invest as well as all kinds of other relevant crypto info. You can adjust the settings on the Telegram app to disallow anonymous additions to cryptocurrency projects if you find yourself bombarded with offers by scammers. Reputable projects at the ICO stage will spread by word of mouth, or by eloquent and meaningful articles posted on their Medium page. A project with serious potential does not need to actively seek participants for their ICO like that. They will often be able to fill their ICO hard cap in a matter of hours, or even just minutes!
Anonymous Team
Alarm bells, again, immediately, if the project has minimal online presence. The individual team members could be mere fabrications. The entire project could be a farce by utterly inexperienced characters. What if the project leaders are simply unaware of the importance of a strong social media profile? That in itself would be too strange to ignore. Top-level projects will have team members with experience in crypto and the LinkedIn accounts for those members will be easily accessible right there on the project website. You should be able to easily see and evaluate each individual’s experience in their field and ascertain what they bring to the project team. Bitconnect’s anonymous team should have been the only deterrent prospective investors needed to discourage them from putting money into that doomed project. Ethhorse, a current project with anonymous founders and operators should be steered clear of at all costs for the same reasons.
Community Atmosphere
The subreddits or Telegram groups of scam projects will often feature moderators that do not allow any kind of criticism in the group chat. If, in the process of your due diligence, you encounter didactic admins that only wish to silence your questioning of certain aspects of the whitepaper or mechanism of the tokenomics
, you should be concerned. Similarly if you see a coherent critical reply attacked by many different users who refuse to engage the substance of the point being made, that may be a subreddit infested with bots. Projects that have nothing to hide will allow free debate in the chat. Ideally, they hope to develop a positive community that is itself an asset to the long-term success and overall strength of the project. Good projects do not need to automatically brand all criticism as Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD).
Whitepaper
One common tactic of scammers is to produce a whitepaper that uses too many buzzwords, and deliberately obfuscates and overcomplicates the explanation of the problem and/or its solution. A good whitepaper clearly and concisely lays out the problem and answer, as well as provides compelling arguments why a Blockchain solution is preferable to the current solution. Another point of concern is a whitepaper that gives unrealistic time frames and goals. Bitconnect’s almost comically optimistic profit projections are a prime example of this, as are the 1,354% yearly gains promised by Plexcoin. Respectable projects will set out development timescales in terms of quarters or years, rather than offering immediate profit projections, which are simply a red flag.
Advisors/Connections in the Cryptoworld
The most prestigious projects will already have partnerships made before the ICO stage, and the worst ones, i.e. the scams, will not mention any such partnerships. Icon (ICX) for example was spawned from a South Korean project named The Loop, a collaboration between 3 Korean universities and the DAYLIFinancial Group. They boasted an advisory panel consisting of the legendary investor Don Tapscott, Jehan Chu and crowdfunding expert Jason Best. On top of a solid team of advisors, good projects will also be visible at major Blockchain events such as the Consensus, and the World Blockchain Forum, etc. Scam projects will be unable to inspire this same level in confidence. As an investor, you should sense a certain presence and expect a certain feeling of trust that should guide you in your investments. After all, it is actually a people-to-people thing you are doing.
Key Stress points upon the Timeline to Identify Scam Projects Post Whitepaper Release The period in the immediate aftermath of the release of the whitepaper can also be decisive in establishing the validity of a project. How a team copes with the roadmap that they have laid out for themselves is key. Valuable insight into the operational efficiency and commitment to the project can be gleaned from the quality of and amount of code committed to GitHub. If you have any experience in computer programming you can see how clean and orderly the code is, which gives insight into the skill of the developers, and in turn the quality of project leaders’ decision-making in hiring team members. Scam projects will have little or no code committed to GitHub, or at best it will be copied and pasted from other projects just to cover their tracks. Start of ICO Sometimes, a scam project, or other project in which you would be better off not investing, will change the terms of the ICO just before the ICO starts. The Key (TKY) ICO doubled the price of tokens on the day before the ICO was due to take place, because the price of NEO had risen so drastically. Currently, the TKY token price is still only half of its ICO price. Initial investors are faced with the prospect of a 50% loss on their investment.
Exchange Listing
Some particularly greedy scammers will create a scam project with the intent of selling tokens in the ICO for BTC and ETH, and then pumping and dumping their share of the tokens immediately after listing. The team of fraudsters behind Monero Gold used this method after the crowdfunding of their useless ERC-20 token. After listing on CoinExchange.io, the team dumped their tokens until the exchange finally ceased trading. Although it is not uncommon for ICO tokens to sold after listing (just like can happen with shares of stock after an IPO), if the price does not stabilize and massive sell walls are continually placed, a scam is likely taking place and the token is being dumped.
Fake Ethereum Twitter giveaway
You may have noticed Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin’s twitter handle has been changed to Vitalik “Not giving away Eth” Buterin in recent months. This is because a group of devious scammers had created fake accounts with almost exact replicas of his profile (deviating by only one character). The fake accounts promised to deposit 1 whole ETH for every 0.1 ETH the potential sucker deposited into the wallet address provided by the scammer. These fake account “Ether giveaway” scam tweets were set up to be sent in just a matter of seconds after the real person tweeted, and usually always appear immediately after the tweet of the real public figure. Fake bot profiles then came into play, thanking the fake Vitalik, or fake Elon Musk, for holding up their end of the bargain and depositing the ETH as promised. One scammer, or group of scammers, managed to fill a wallet up with almost $20 thousand worth of ETH, which they transferred out, never to be seen or heard from again.
Effect of Scam Customers, Upon the Affected Parties
Of course, this is no fun for the targeted public figure either. They need to take steps to avoid being targeted again. This will mean changing their handle, their username, or making their accounts private. However, the injured party with whom we are most concerned is the unfortunate scammed social media user, who has no chance whatsoever of getting his or her funds back, ever. It is a harsh lesson to learn. But it is a fact of crypto reality. Nearly every one that trades crypto will at least be exposed to frauds or scams in one way or another. In this case, we think it is better to learn about scams by studying them, rather than learn from your own unfortunate and expensive experience. In the case of Mr. Buterin, these incidents were awful public relations for the Ethereum project. It had only been a few years since cryptocurrency as a whole was primarily associated with criminality and seedy transactions on the Darkweb. Any connection with unscrupulous behavior is best avoided at all costs. Negative associations could have been particularly damaging for Ethereum’s brand because the vast majority of ICO fraud is committed using the ERC-20 token as the template for the scam tokens.
Any and all the scamming or fraudulent behavior in the cryptocurrency ecosystem is bound to have a negative impact on the speed at which mainstream uptake finally takes place. Cryptocurrencies, as an emerging asset class, will be painted in the worst possible light. Crypto is aiming to, and is in fact in the process of, causing great disruption in traditional centralized finance and business. Mainstream media organizations are also part of that traditional centralized economy. Press coverage will be damning. Something is happening here, but Mr. Jones doesn’t know what it is.
Legal Recourse for Scams
We clearly understand, there is a possibility of being scammed. We know the scams are happening. The SEC has made some arrests and actually charged people for operating fraudulent ICOs. But it is a struggle to deal with the flood of ICOs coming from anywhere at any time. The SEC filed charges against two founders of a purported financial services startup for orchestrating a fraudulent ICO that raised more than $32million from thousands of investors. As you know from the ICOs we have covered so far, the lack of regulation allows for direct contact and dealing between the entrepreneurs, business owners and potential investors. While we believe this is a blessing according to the founding principles of Bitcoin and other alternate Cryptocurrencies, because it frees us from traditional roadblocks, middle-men, and all kinds of time-consuming procedures; it also leaves investors in a place where there is often little to no hope of ever recovering funds lost in fraudulent schemes.
Actions after a Successful ICO
Good post-ICO practice is characterized by stringent security, well thought-out legal strategy and clear communication. Many projects have paid the price in damage to their reputation for failing to adequately guard customer information, leaving themselves open to phishing attacks by fraudsters. Investors in the Enigma project had half a million dollars stolen from them; and a whopping $8.4 million was defrauded from investors in Veritaseum via phishing attacks. After a successful token distribution, the team’s main focus is initially on switching the enterprise from one primarily focused on fundraising, to superficially at least, a fully-fledged, functioning business. This involves removing most of the token sale-related content from their main webpage, sending newsletters to all successful ICO participants, and sending refunds to those who may have missed the deadline or the hardcap. Then, with the stressful and complicated fundraising stage finally concluded, a portion of the funds raised can be assigned to fuel the growth of the project community. This can involve hiring community managers, forum admins, and social media managers to outsource the job of keeping investors in the loop. The founders can focus on growth strategy and product development. The cultivation of a thriving and energetic community is extremely important. The community will give you free marketing for your product and your business. Community members who believe in the project, and are engaged by professional moderators, can give you very effective promotion to other prospective investors. Communication with community members is a great way to test ideas and gauge sentiment related to various aspects of your project.
The project leads must set aside adequate funds for lawyers. The project will need to address potential future or imminent problems with regulators, at the very least. The transition from fundraising project to full-fledged business can be incredibly challenging, and even more stressful than the ICO itself. The main thing to remember is that your pre-sale and ICO investors are not just silent investors waiting for a return. They are the early adopters of your solution, of your product; they are the community and promoters of your project; and they are the individuals with a vested interest in the financial success of your venture. The ICO environment is not as heavily regulated, so quarterly and/or semi-annual reporting is not required the way it is in the traditional world. That means your own style of effective communication about the progress and key developments on your project matters even more. In the ICO world, you communicate with your press releases, social media, and Medium posts. You also communicate by the very nature of your relations with your exchange, and relationships with your cornerstone investors. Effective communication and good business relationships can play a prominent role in the success or failure of your venture (by token liquidity and valuation).
If your investors start to lose interest, and stop trading your token on the exchange, liquidity will dry up and cause increasingly volatile price swings. You need to keep certain things in mind, and follow effective practices to maintain a happy and motivated community.
Social Media & Medium
In addition to your website, your social media & Medium blog most likely formed a significant part of your ICO preparations. Your purpose pivots after the ICO from one of promotion to one of communication. Consistent, informative and material Medium blogs, also Facebook and Twitter updates, ensure that investors remain engaged and well-informed of what the company is up to. Frequent activity in this space makes investors feel much more comfortable. You can foster a kind of organic community expansion that is consistently advertising your project to potential new members.
Cornerstone Investors & Exchanges
As we mentioned, your relationship with investors in the ICO world is different from that of the traditional silent IPO minority equity partners. Consistent, Transparent & Honest communication is incredibly important here. Even if an ICO is struggling to overcome a problem or whatever issues are occurring, honest communication from the team is key to business survival. You should think of and treat your exchange like a business partner too, a very important one at that. Exchanges provide liquidity for you and your investors. That liquidity is like the blood for your business. Many top exchanges demand nothing less than absolute honesty and integrity, it is imperative to maintain strong and comfortable relationships with exchanges. Everything we have said so far, also applies to your Telegram channel and forums too. These give you another great opportunity to build a thriving community. Team members and investors can enjoy lively debates in their Telegram channels. This can be constructive discussion, or critical commentary too. But it is always valuable as a direct link between the team and the community. It is always good to know how people are feeling and what they expect from you and your project. You are able to use your Telegram channel and forums to consistently adapt your marketing and communication strategy. Keep your investors as happy and comfortable as possible, and you will be more likely to attract new investors and allocations. Other forums around the internet operate more or less in the same manner as Telegram.
After a successful funding round with the hardcap reached and time to spare, legal counsel has been secured, and the community is flourishing, the team will prepare for their first listing by paying the exchange fee and waiting for the announcement by the exchange. Unless they are willing to pay exorbitant fees for an immediate listing on Binance for example, teams will usually settle for an initial listing on a second-tier exchange. The fee charged by an exchange depends on many different factors that we will cover in more detail in the next section.
ICO Company actions after a Successful ICO
Real World Case Study
The Basic Attention Token (BAT) project, when used in conjunction with the Brave Browser, allows users to pay micro-fees in BAT to their most-used sites. The idea was conceived by Brendan Eich, the inventor of Javascipt and former CEO of Mozilla Firefox. Investors absolutely pounced on it at ICO and the project raised an amazing $35million in under 30 seconds. The BAT/Brave project has delivered on time on nearly all of its targets, helped in no small part by having a working product, the Brave Browser, for over a year before the token launch. The project secured a listing on the premier exchange, Binance, in November 2017.
A project can suffer through a disappointing funding phase and, for example, fail to reach 75% of its hardcap. The team will be only partially funded. Though they may be able to initiate the project, the value proposition of the token has been compromised, potentially forever. The market has spoken. There is limited faith in the team’s ability to complete or carry out their project. Failure to reach a hardcap is a serious obstacle on the project road map. This will mean massive revisions to the timescales for development and listing. Such a project may have to be content listing on decentralized exchanges for a period of time and they will lose any post-ICO hype that could have helped the project price to “moon” early on. There is less money to be allocated. Each section of the business will be underfunded compared to the original plan. There can be delays in code development, exchange listing, marketing and community development as well.
Calling the Tezos ICO a disappointment might seem strange considering they raised over $232million. But this open-source, smart contracts fintech platform became a victim of its own success post-ICO by devolving into multiple class-action lawsuits between the founders and its foundation chairman. They suffered from a distinct lack of clearly defined roles and expectations on key positions. There was infighting at the boardroom level. This all caused an as yet unresolved delay in listing and development. This is also one example why a capped ICO can be more desirable for investors than an uncapped ICO. If the team have a set amount of capital to work with, an amount that isn’t absolutely ridiculous, like in the case of Tezos, perhaps the resultant greed and discord is less likely. Although it may not be so easy for speculative investors to make a profit from an uncapped ICO with such a massive initial market cap, it is a very impressive feat of fundraising nonetheless. Tezos’s post ICO market cap of $232million is already 64th of all projects, and would have to perform brilliantly on listing to maintain this position.
Company actions after a Failed ICO
Failed ICOs can mean either fundraising initiatives that have failed to reach the softcap and will therefore not be economically viable, or fraudulent projects whose sole intention was to steal from investors and do an exit scam. We’ve already covered scams and fraud projects in detail, but what happens when an ICO just fails to raise the requisite funds? Projects that are legitimate, with honest founders and developers, refund the ETH or BTC deposited by investors as quickly as possible if the softcap is not reached. The same process that is followed by ICOs that are oversubscribed is employed by those that have failed to raise enough capital. The process of returning funds back to the sender ideally should take a period of days, but more likely will take a few weeks. The Sappy Network, advised by Dan Tapscott, failed to come anywhere near to their funding goals. They are currently in the process of sending all investor funds back to the wallets from which they came. The statement from the founders read as a textbook example of how you should react to failure with the founder stating “In the spirit of transparency and honesty, we are sharing with the community that we did not reach the soft cap, and thus we will be honoring our terms and conditions and returning the Ethers to all contributors”
Exchange Listing
A bottleneck developed in the ICO market after the explosion of crypto prices in 2017. There was a massive increase of ICO teams on all stages along the pathway from start-up to fully listed crypto asset. Certainly, a huge part of the value proposition for both the token and the project depends on securing a listing on an exchange. It is precisely the liquidity of the token as a valuable asset on a free market exchange, that determines or even defines its value. The liquidity is what makes tokens attractive to investors, but that liquidity simply does not exist without a platform for the exchange. Unfortunately for new projects, the balance of power is heavily weighted in favor of large centralized exchanges that can pick and choose which tokens to list, and the timescale within which listing will occur. Each large exchange has its own list of pros and cons as well as its own specific procedure for coin/token listing. They also have their own particular ethos regarding the type of projects they prefer to list. ERC-20 tokens will be available for trade immediately on decentralized exchanges (IDEX Forkdelta) but those platforms are generally quite low volume, and certainly not a long term solution. Projects must often pay huge fees to be listed on the larger centralized exchanges. At first those fees will be prohibitive. The usual route is to initially list on a more reasonably priced smaller exchange like Kucoin or Gate.io.
Listing Process
Major centralized exchanges have the power to list anything they want, and they also each have a unique structure that projects must adhere to if they wish to be listed. Each potential new listing will undergo a rigorous examination by the exchange operators to test the feasibility for listing the token. An exchange will likely have forms available on its website that you can fill out to give them all the necessary initial information. If a particular project and token qualify for listing, the team will invariably be put under a NDA, Non-Disclosure Agreement, to avoid any insider trading or other regulatory problem
s. In the case of larger exchanges like Binance, there is a period within which owners of a newly listed coin or token can transfer them to the exchange in preparation for trading. This is a fantastic opportunity for traders to make use of the likely pump that occurs after a new token is listed on a large exchange. It is common to see up to 100% increases on the first day of trading, and a subsequent dump of up to 50% or more can follow. This allows traders holding the coin already, to sell for a good profit, and maybe buy back in at a much lower price too, if they think that is a good idea.
Exchange Fees
There are no definitive figures available to the public regarding fees that major exchanges charge new projects to list. Binance, Bitfinex, Kraken and Bittrex have all been quoted as saying that they do not charge any fee at all but this is almost definitely untrue. Knowledgeable industry insiders estimate between $500,000 and $1,000,000 USD for listing on a top-tier exchange. (There have been more rumors of 7 figure exchange listing fees since January 2018 too). This figure will vary greatly from project to project. Various factors can affect how an exchange determines the fee for a particular project. These are some of the most important ones: Market Maker Service Required Whether or not the client project requires liquidity services directly from the exchange, or can connect proprietary ones via API, will lead to a huge reduction in listing cost.
Type of Token (ERC-20 NEP-5 or DAG) Not all tokens are created equal in the listing process. ERC-20 tokens and BTC based tokens have code architecture that will almost certainly be preferred by the exchange. NEO based tokens (NEP-5) such as Ontology will be far most costly to integrate because separate new wallets have to be built to facilitate NEO transactions. The costs involved in integrating Direct Acyclic Graph projects such as Nano into the exchange structure are even worse. Expected Daily Volume Exchanges derive their profits largely from transaction fees and withdrawal fees. The trading volume a new token is likely to bring in will have a great influence on the computation of the exchange listing fee. Exchange Listing Procedures Evaluation Different exchanges have different rules for new listings. A new project must of course abide by specific rules for that exchange before they are allowed to list there. There are procedures that must generally be followed for the most noteworthy exchanges. You can get a good idea of the hurdles to be overcome before listing can take place.
Ongoing relationship with Exchanges
Exchanges, usually Huobi or Kucoin, will sometimes make it essential for newly listed tokens to engage in “trading competitions” after listing. Competitions can last between 2 weeks, or a month or more, aiming to increase the trading volume for that token, thereby increasing trading fees collected by the exchange, and giving the project extra publicity too. The whales may have made a nice profit already and be very happy about it; but the project token can still get stuck in a long period of stagnation and a loss of post-ICO hype. Once a coin or token has been successfully registered for trading on a particular exchange, the project must focus on maintaining regulatory compliance and paying things like annual maintenance fees too. Exchanges can investigate and delist coins or tokens to see if they have fallen below a certain standard set by the exchange. The exchange is concerned about such things as: an extended period with an extremely low volume; a team member connection to an exit scam; or other such immoral/illegal behavior.
Post ICO Company Evaluation
After a presumably successful ICO, the necessary funds have been obtained, and the real business, the real team challenge is now, to bring the project to life as a bona fide disruptive Blockchain endeavor! The core advantage of the ICO method of funding business startups is the lack of regulatory hurdles to navigate with regards to fundraising and fund allocation. The funds that have been raised have, in effect, been freely given to the project leads to do with what they will in a no-strings-attached transaction. Of course, there are still strings attached in that the team are tasked with making that money grow for the investors. But there is no regulatory oversight of the process. The regulatory freedom is a double edge sword. It gives a good team freedom to work however they want; and it also allows for unscrupulous thieves to use the ICO process to defraud investors of their ETH and BTC.
Advantages of being Post ICO From Investor Perspective
You should have little to fear in terms of fraud from a project in which you have invested, if you have done your due diligence correctly. You can expect the tokens to be distributed, and the exchange listing to take place as expected. And you know your project is totally legitimate. There are different ways to think about your ICO tokens after the crowd sale has concluded. If you are a speculative investor looking for a quick flip, you can gauge the correct moment and sell anytime you like, assuming the ICO has been well-received by the markets.
From Team Perspective
The post-ICO period is, from the point of view of the team, a period where stress and responsibility for the safety of investor funds is passed, in the form of ICO tokens, from the team to the investors themselves. This responsibility for tokens is replaced with the stress of building the actual company itself, and succeeding in the business as planned. A small portion of the responsibility for the project’s success is also passed on to the exchange that has listed the tokens. This is especially true if market makers have been employed by the team or the exchange to provide liquidity. After the ICO has concluded, all funds are released to the project team immediately, so they can start building their business brand, and tackling each step on the road map right away. The freedom with which startups can operate is one of the main reasons behind the explosion in Blockchain businesses in 2017. With the ICO funds safe, and money being put to work on various areas essential to the growth of the project, and the tokens already distributed to investors, the risk of fraud is greatly diminished. If KYC and Anti-money Laundering procedures have been followed correctly during the ICO phase, the risk of phishing attacks and theft will also be marginal now. At any rate, with tokens safely delivered to all participants, the responsibility has passed from the team to the investor.
From Team Perspective
The release of all funds and the freedom to allocate them with no supervision, as cited above, is certainly a tremendous advantage empowering the team to fulfil the entire breadth of their vision unimpeded. But it does have its drawbacks. If there is a mistake made in the allocation of funds, or an unforeseen problem arises, there is nowhere to turn to, and no means of generating further money via crowdfunding. The ICO is over; it is finished. The project simply has to work with what it has. Your community can sometimes turn against you when the market is going down. Times like that just add to the already intense pressure of presiding over a startup Blockchain business.
Solution: DAICO
The DAICO, or Decentralized Autonomous Organization Initial Coin Offering, is a means to integrate a more specific, rigorous and regimented smart contract schedule into the ICO process. Doing so will eliminate fraudulent ICOs, exit scams, pump and dumps, and many of the other disadvantages listed above. The DAICO method, proposed by Ethereum creator, Vitalik Buterin, will merge the core concepts of both an ICO and a DAO to leverage the most relevant features of both, in order to solve the main problems in the ICO method. For example, to eliminate the risk of an exit scam, the release of funds will be spread out over a period of time, with the next allotment only being released when a certain set of parameters are met.
Buterin explains that the DAICO method will provide user protection in a manner not present in the current ICO model, ensuring funds are not misspent or used in any way contrary to the intention of investors. In simpler terms the DAICO will operate as follows: The DAICO will start with a smart contract by its executors that can set whether this is to be a capped or uncapped round of fundraising (amongst many other options) as well as including KYC requirements. After these settings have been configured, the DAICO is set into “contribution mode” and presented to the public. This stage will function identically to a normal ICO with ETH exchanged for project tokens. Once the funding period has elapsed, or the hardcap has been met, investors will have the ability to set the “tap” for the collected funds. This will set the amount per second, or amount per minute, that will be available to the executor to develop that specific portion of the project to which those funds have been assigned. If investors believe at any point that the team is misspending funds or otherwise wasting time, etc., the investors have significant options to take. Of course they could choose to release more funds to the team. But, they could also stop the tap altogether, and stop the entire ICO, by voting, and actually release all unused funds back to their own wallets from which the investment had first been made!
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submitted by UBAI_UNIVERSITY to u/UBAI_UNIVERSITY [link] [comments]

Wanted to share an outline of my in-depth investment framework. I keep seeing short platitudes with not enough direct questions and I wanted to change that.

// Better formatting here
Outline of our Investment Framework
  1. Project Overview
  2. Technology
  3. Business Case
  4. Crypto-Economics
  5. Community
  6. Legal/Compliance
Project Overview:
*What is the purpose? Summarize the purpose of the project in a paragraph and get down the salient points. Once done, ask yourself: is this really needed?
*When was the project founded? Get background on the formation of the project.
*What is the current market cap? Projects with larger marketcaps usually indicate lower risk with lower reward. Also be sure to look at the implied market cap, which takes into account current circulating supply. If only a small amount of tokens are circulating (<50%), the token may be overpriced.
*What is the current 24hr volume? Higher volume means your investment is more liquid. This is important when in investing in a low cap coin.
*What type of coin is it? A strong portfolio consists of different sectors of coins. The main types are: Product (Has its own Blockchain), Utility (Product on another blockchain), Pure Transactional (Public), Pure Transactional (Private), Blockchain Services (Off-chain solutions, providing interoperability), Protocol, Stable (Probably not the best if you’re looking for gains :)
Technology
*Do they have a strong development team? Schooling, previous projects, GitHub activity, advisory board, etc. Enough developers to complete roadmap goals? Often you’ll see a small team with lofty goals. The team is the most important part of any start-up. If you were going to pick one criterion to judge, this would be it.
*Why does the asset need blockchain to succeed? Many “assets” could just be called start-ups. Most do not require blockchain and only use it as a funding mechanism or a buzzword to attract outside investment.
*Is the asset innovative? Does this asset introduce new or improved technology that solves a problem, addresses a market need or creates value for network participants? If so, is the new technology explained/proven out in depth?
*Have they built their own blockchain? What type of blockchain is it? Being a token is not necessarily a bad thing, but building out your own technology indicates greater upside potential. If they have, is it public/private, permissioned/permissionless. If it is private and permission, do they really need a blockchain?
*Are there developers outside the core team working on the project? Projects with a large amount of external stakeholders are usually more technologically sound than projects worked on solely by a core team. This is one way to judge the strength of a project if you are less technically savvy.
*Is their white paper well done & technically sound? Even if you are not technical, there are ways to tell if a white paper is good or not. For example, if it looks like a powerpoint it’s usually trying to hide lack of content with flashiness. Does it include fluff or unnecessary sections? Does it feel like it’s for marketing? (It shouldn’t). Is their vision clearly explained? Do they detail the risks as well as the opportunities? Whitepaper reading is a skill in itself.
*Have they achieved roadmap goals? What is already developed, and what needs to be developed? Has main net launched? Has testnet launched? Do they have a working wallet? Do the roadmap goals look achievable? Now, this is different when evaluating an early stage project, but for established projects looking at their history of delivering is important. Also, understanding what they still have to do & when they plan to deliver it can help predict pumps…
*If it is a token, is it blockchain agnostic? Success is based on the performance of a platform indicates a lack of foresight on the project. If they have no plans to address this, that is a red flag. For example, both Modum & Ambrosus are attempting to build out a chain for medical & food shipment tracking but only one has structured itself to succeed even if Ethereum fails.
*Is the technology sound, secure or proven? It’s OK to have an unproven technology, but the team should have a history of responding thoughtfully and completely to potential issues. If issues raised by the greater community have gone unanswered by the development team, be wary of the project.
Business Case
*Is the team well positioned to succeed in this market? Do the founders have success in this area already? Are the relative newcomers? Any advisors on the team with deep experience? Do you trust the team to overcome obstacles? If you’re making a substantial investment, I would encourage reaching out to the team and talking to them directly.
*What is the addressable market? Is it large enough to warrant the current valuation? Often times you will see assets with large valuations even though their addressable market is quite small.
*Who is the end user for this? What are their incentives for using the end product?
*Is there a clear vision & roadmap outlined? Make sure the founders can present their vision with absolute clarity. Having too many different avenues of attack is a red flag. Usually projects trying to eat the world one piece at a time do better. Is there anything in production or current uses? Is the product being used in any meaningful manner? What are the potential use cases, and how far off are they from being in production?
*What does the competitive landscape look like? Is the project a leader? A follower? With frameworks built out for all competitors, how does it compare? This is a great question when valuing potential investments. Small caps often have large caps pursuing the same goal. By comparing the fundamentals of both, you can get a feel for a valuation of the small cap.
*Is this competitive against current centralized solutions? An extension of “does this need a blockchain”. Perhaps this project will be more competitive than existing blockchain projects but will lose out to a centralized solution. How did they fundraise? Did they have an ICO? Airdrop? Pre-sale? Be wary of projects that sold out in a pre-sale as they have a massive concentration of token supply. Just know how the initial token supply was generated and if there were any issues with the process.
*Are their operations in order? Have they used funds in an intelligent manner? Is there transparency? Thoughtful cash management is important for the long term-viability of any project.
*Are there external stakeholders? A good sign of success is investment from outside stakeholders. Watch out for big names. Don Tapscott and Tim Draper are brilliant, but throw their money at a lot of projects. Their investment does not mean they are the best projects in the space. There are some prominent investors that sell their name to sub-par projects in exchange for cash. Don’t forget to vet the investors!
Crypto & Token Economics
*Is the governance structure well designed? How are people incentivized to act in and improve upon the network? Identify the stakeholders, power brokers, and influencers. Does the governance structure ensure a fair & streamlined decision making process?
*Has the network experienced growth over time? Look to see if there has been significant adoption in terms of nodes/mining etc. You want to see a robust ecosystem growing.
*Is a token necessary? Is the unique token required or can it be substituted for ethereum/bitcoin? Many projects will have tokens that are fundraising mechanisms and little else. The token should be indispensable to the functioning of the system. It should provide an incentive for interacting with the system. This could be a whole article by itself…
*Is the token well designed & distributed? Inflationary? Deflationary? What is the circulating supply? Is the token distributed in a fair & equal manner? A token that is concentrated in the hands of the team with low circulating supply has inflated pricing. Fair distribution is key to having a successful project, as it is indicative of a stronger, more decentralized network.
*Is there liquidity? The number of exchanges that support the asset, the 24hr volume. A good indication for an underpriced project is high volume relative to market cap in addition to listing on a small number of exchanges.
Community
*Is the community large? Look at telegram, Reddit, discord, twitter, bitcointalk. How many people are talking about the project? Small-cap but large community is always a plus.
*Is the community excited? What is the vibe of people interacting with the project? Are they excited, scared, etc? How are people talking about the project?
*Is the community engaged? Are there people actively engaging with the project? Using it in daily life, building out supporting projects, etc. Any community that takes an active role in furthering the goals of the project is a good sign. Is the community mature? If there are an abundance of memes vs intelligent conversations that is something to take note of.
*Does the team interact with the community? This is probably the most important. Projects with a responsive and interactive team generally come out on top and indicate a certain level of seriousness about a project.
Legal/Compliance
*Is it more or less likely to be regulated than its peers? Privacy coins, potential securities, and Ponzi schemes seem likely to be regulated in the near term.
submitted by WBStudios to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

Hype in an ICO

Hello!
My name is Dmitrii Skripkin, I am the head of traffic department at Platinum, the company that can attract crypto community to your project, provides best ICO and STO marketing services and can be really helpful in teaching about crypto-economics.
Learn more:
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As for the teaching… Welcome to the UBAI! Here we gathered all our knowledge to share it with people who just step on the road of crypto success.
If you want to understand the overall influence hype can have on a team and anyone involved with an ICO project, take a look at the summary of our lesson
What is Hype in Cryptocurrency
The English Dictionary defines ‘hype’ as extravagant or intensive publicity or promotion. Therefore it is only right that we define cryptocurrency hype as extravagant or intense publicity and promotion for any kind of cryptocurrency. Recent research suggests there is a 60% chance that people around you have encountered the word ‘bitcoin’, or ‘cryptocurrency’ from one source or another. This widespread publicity was also catalyzed by the stunning and sudden rise of the price of bitcoin in 2017 (and other times as well), which led to a frenzy in FOMO, fear of missing out, which drove otherwise skeptical people to eventually believe in cryptocurrencies. From that point, many people started to believe in the idea and potential of cryptocurrencies. This led to even further growth in optimism among members of the cryptocurrency community, which, in turn, drove demand and hype to absolutely atmospheric levels. There is an ongoing argument among financial experts about the nature and destiny of cryptocurrencies. One school of thought is that crypto is, in fact, the next evolution of money. Other people think crypto is nothing but a bubble or fraud and will eventually fade into oblivion.
Roles of Hype
It is a fact there is hype in the cryptocurrency industry. It is also a fact that investors often trade and hold positions based on that hype. But before speaking about the role and purpose of cryptocurrency hype, let’s take a look at the major causes behind it. Ever increasing media coverage has brought the entire crypto sphere into the limelight. Just the media calling bitcoin “Digital Gold” has coaxed people into buying and hoarding bitcoins for themselves. Increasing groups of cryptocurrency believers have spread the idea that cryptocurrencies are a unique store of value, uncorrelated to other more traditional asset classes. There is also a significant number of individuals who purchased bitcoins before the sudden rise in value and are now hoarding their currency like gold, seemingly unwilling to sell at any price. The money to be made in crypto has attracted a great number of miners. We have previously discussed the key role and value of coin miners to the integrity of the blockchain. These miners help support not only the price and the maturity of bitcoin, but also the blockchain technology on which bitcoin depends.
Common ICO Narratives in a nutshell
An ICO is a funding mechanism that a company uses primarily to raise early stage capital. So far it has largely been blockchain-based technology solutions which employ “Tokens” (cryptocurrencies or digital assets) that are functionally used in the company’s solution, so as to give them a relative value. These days, there are a large number of companies constantly ‘pre’, ‘on’ or ‘post’ ICO. But the first ever recorded ICO was by Mastercoin in 2013. Their campaign lasted for almost a month, with Mastercoin raising up to 5,000 BTC, then valued at $500,000 USD. A year later, Ethereum was launched. And in 2015, the Frontier, an experimental release of Ethereum platform was released. A month later, Augur Token was launched. Since then, many other ICOs have followed. In 2016 alone, ICO sales raised up to $103 million with ICONOMI and SingularDTV leading the sale with $10 million and $7.5 million. In many ways, ICOs were made possible by the ease with which companies were able to create their ICO tokens on the Ethereum Blockchain technology. With the success of bitcoin and the explosive growth of ICOs for various purposes, the market has shifted solely from the topics of blockchain tech and cryptocurrency solutions, to more specific and practical applications of these solutions to actual real world problems. But at the same time, there has also been a large number of scams as a result of the lack of regulation and insufficient oversight. This is something to always keep in mind when you are considering ICO investments.
The Power of Perception
People’s perception of an ICO depends upon several key factors. Due to the incredibly large amount of paper wealth generated by investing in cryptocurrency, people are inclined to invest with less stringent diligence, even regarding their own money. That is, for better or worse, generally more true for crypto as opposed to traditional investors. Intelligent investors pay particular attention to the following details when evaluating an ICO: -The quality and marketable potential of the idea. -The necessity of a blockchain solution to solve this particular problem. -The quality and commitment of the team to the company. -The tokenmetrics and tokenomics. -The ability to actually bring the solution to market as a viable business.
Signs of Market Hype & Anticipation
A solid understanding of the signs of market hype and any resulting hyper-anticipation requires a multifaceted approach to evaluating an ICO. All the circumstances, situations, prevailing market conditions, and other factors contribute in various ways and to various degrees, to each ICO. It is important to also understand why different investors are investing. Some are committing capital because they truly believe in the idea as a viable business and are planning to hold on for a longer term. Some people are pure speculators hoping to multiply their money and take a profit as fast as they can. There is nothing inherently wrong with either one of those approaches or reasons to invest! The point is, you just need to know with whom you are investing so you can make the most advantageous decisions about your own funds.
The following are signs of ICO market hype: The Social Media Factor When an ICO is looking to build momentum among potential investors, social media is at the top of the list of ways to do it. Social media allows projects to market their product directly to investors without relying upon middlemen, and in many cases, basically, for free. Professional marketers have also appeared recently to help projects focus on developing their project-specific technology, or business connections; while the regular marketing team is able to continue building the necessary awareness and hype. Many ICO projects seek to build large Telegram communities, and of course, schedule their ICO at the most opportune time. If you are wondering how a project is being perceived by the market and general community, reading their Telegram and social media posts will give you useful information. You will see how they think, and a get a good look at actual market opinion.
Hype’s Affect Upon an ICO
Over the years, too many crypto lovers invested in hyped and overrated digital assets that promised a 10x ROI (return on investment). This incredibly large rate of return attracted many eager (sometimes a little too gullible) investors. They eventually learned that while the price of ICO tokens may in fact increase 3x or 10x; they can also fall just as much, and just as easily. Many tokens offered as a part of the early ICOs either never went to market, or failed miserably when they did. Of course there are no guarantees in traditional investing either, but crypto is still at a particularly volatile and treacherous stage of growth. Basically, an ICO token price should primarily be driven by business fundamentals, such as cash flow and profitability. But the wild swings in value, and the low barriers to launch an ICO, have grossly amplified the influence hype has upon an ICO token price. Naturally, investors are focused on their own return on investment more than anything else. So, that is where we will focus our attention now too. This return ultimately rests with the token price, and the ability of the investors to buy low and sell high. There are four key attributes or characteristics of hype which directly lead to stronger demand for a token, and thus, a higher price. If the ICO is backed by influential and well-known crypto investors/Venture Capitalists, the team is very likely to have a large investor base to which they can pitch the coin. This is also true for successful entrepreneurs with a good reputation and track record.
Hype’s Effect on the Team Behind ICO
The team structure behind an ICO plays an important role in the hype process. If an ICO is successful, the developers are likely to draw more attention to themselves, thereby becoming key figures in that success. In that way, an ICO allows a project to both fund an early stage idea, as well as to create a reputation among investors for the individuals involved. After having achieved success on previous ventures, as we have mentioned before, investors will be keen to invest based on an established track record. These factors encourage entrepreneurs to try new ideas as a benefit of having a greater funding profile and a tangible resume to use in all aspects of their business, not just fundraising. A strong resume like that encourages confidence that would allow an individual associated with a successful project to partner with larger, traditional firms. Such an individual would also be more valuable on other projects by both providing insight and access to more investment capital.
If you stay tuned, you must have learned a lot about the hype going around crypto, but what are its cons or even Dangers? Bitcoin alone has about a $284 billion USD market capitalization with about 16.4 million bitcoin in circulation. Hype brings out the latent greed in every investor. On any given day, media people may be discussing the endless potential of cryptocurrencies, or the unbelievable returns from crypto investments. While cryptocurrencies have a solid future ahead of them, with strong underlying technological principles, greed and fear will always induce people to create a world of hyperbole. Most investors do not really look as deeply as they should. They do insufficient research, or all too often, almost no research at all, before investing. This is human nature. Most people do not want to feel like they need to do homework again. People also become mesmerized by the success stories, and they just want to get a piece of the pie at whatever cost. It is always important to stay calm and rational. Stay diligent. Keep your mind focused on the long term too, not just the present moment. If you become too enamored with a project, or try to convince yourself nothing matters because “it will all just rise in value anyway” then you have lost your rational decision making ability. You should take a step back and ensure you aren’t being caught up in the hype.
Dangers of Hype Part 2
Hype and speculation give value to a newly launched coin. At that point you will own an intangible functional token in a very early stage company. The value of what you actually have is only what an exchange or someone else is willing to give you for that token on the open market. The price might move in your favor and earn you a fantastic return. But it can just as easily fall to zero. And in fact, this is exactly what has often happened. When you purchase a token without an underlying cash flow positive business, your entire investment is at the mercy of market expectations and the level of hype in a project. Future cash flows and success will either make or break your investment. The dangers of hype in cryptocurrency can never be overemphasized, and never be overlooked. After all is said and done, it is the average individual investor who will suffer most. Possible Downside from Exposure and Attention Speculative Investments Most newly launched ICOs depend upon the frenzy created by the primary cryptocurrencies (particularly BTC and ETH) hype for success. Most consumers/investors these days buy or invest in an ICO based upon speculative ideas about extraordinary returns. The hype can grow so much it does not leave adequate room for actual facts. The most unfortunate result of all this can be seeing your entire investment wiped out by unscrupulous characters selling you fraudulent coin offerings (ICOs) and scams. Hype can dazzle investors into making investment decisions they later regret. But there is no reason for you to ever make such an avoidable mistake in your own crypto career.
Possible Downside from Exposure and Attention §2 Speculative Investments Continued
For example, in January 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) shut down an allegedly fraudulent initial coin offering (ICO) from a company called ‘AriseBank’. The SEC alleged that the ICO was an “outright scam” which falsely advertised and promised FDIC-insured bank accounts to investors through nonexistent banks. The value of the tokens fell to zero. The incredible hype and seemingly limitless potential of cryptocurrencies at the time, as well as this particular idea, led a large number of investors to commit capital to what was determined to be a scam. It is not only that they made grossly fraudulent claims, but there was simply no protection for investors at all. The investors were left with nothing. Some investors were surely all-in on this one project. Some investors had surely leveraged themselves to the max, borrowed too much, and had to stomach an extremely unpalatable loss. These are incredibly important things to keep in mind. Speculative investments will allow you to make a tremendous sum of money, but they can, and all too often will, take away those funds just as easily.
Hype can create Problems Real World Examples
Only a small fraction of the total ICOs being promoted have a working and viable prototype. Yet, every ICO is looking to sell investors on the likelihood of future success on that project. The Bancor ICO is a real-life example from June 2017. It raised up to $153 million in a matter of hours, but since the sale its value has plunged 38%. Some experts have since found big loopholes in their stated plans and intentions. The demise of many ICO projects is caused by such common issues as no viable product, not adhering to timeline, or a team that is distracted and/or not productive. Other coin scams have also successfully skimmed money from investors as a result of cryptocurrency frenzy. Projects like Benebit which scammed investors of up to $4.5 million by claiming to unify customer loyalty programs via blockchain technology. Benebit proved to be an exit scam, despite all of the major review sites rating the ICO positively. It was widely followed across social media, including 9000 people in its Telegram channel. Many people are still in the project’s Telegram attempting to understand what went wrong, and why.
In our previous posts we’ve talked a lot about the cons of the Hype, but have you ever thought if you can take it into your own hands?
Managing Hype for ICOs
You understand what hype is and what it does. You also need to know, what to do about it, how to manage it, either as a seller or investor aiming to be on the right side of price movements. Crypto is a recognized part of our financial landscape already. ICOs and the Blockchain are here to stay. The point of concern is, the course it will chart from here. It is rapidly becoming the new normal for entrepreneurs to get funding from communities of people or investors sharing an important unifying characteristic or value system. This has, as we have discussed previously, completely revolutionized “business” and the approach to starting, funding and growing a company. In 2017 alone, more than $5.6 billion was invested via ICOs. That huge sum brings real opportunity for growth, and equally real possibility for despair. You can learn from examples, how to manage hype for your own benefit and protection. In the whitepaper, the purpose of the ICO should be clearly stated and sufficient information should be given to investors explaining what the project is and why it deserves to be funded. This helps remove or discourage unnecessary speculation. A good and informative whitepaper helps encourage investors to make decisions based on reasonable conclusions as opposed to dreams and desires.
Always Have a Road Map Many ICOs we see on the internet for example, do not really have any long term plan for their product. ICO whitepapers should produce sufficient information on the timeline of the product and the sequence of necessary steps to get there. Questions such as: “When will a marketable product be available to be sold?” “What are the key risks to achieving any goal or aspect of the timeline?” These questions should be explained in the whitepaper, and supplemented with possible plans and alternate avenues to take if certain major issues arise. 6.3e)Managing Hype for ICOs §4 Many whitepapers might tend to overuse technical terms that sound like gibberish to ordinary intelligent people or investors. If you are trying to sell an idea to a broad spectrum of investors, it is important to explain key terms and themes so people are actually able to understand you. If a whitepaper is overly technical, yet seems to appeal to a broad base of investors anyway, it could be a red flag that the investors are confused, and that was perhaps the purpose of the whitepaper. Alternatively, maybe the team just isn’t particularly experienced at marketing their idea. That could also could present either an opportunity or a problem. One way or another, communication with the market will greatly influence the future price of the token.
Scam Projects Real World Examples
Multinational accounting firm Ernst and Young found that $400 million of the $3.7 billion USD raised from ICOs (as of January 22, 2018) had been stolen. That is, up to 10% of all ICO funding is virtually being stolen from investors. Though ICO scams are the most common method of theft in the crypto world, some projects will actually operate for a period of time before disappearing with the money. Like in a Ponzi scheme, an exit scam may be planned for later, sometime after a manipulated pump; or some other time the team believes is most opportune to take the money and run. Giza: Giza marketed itself as a platform within which different cryptocurrencies could be stored securely. But after raising $2.4 million in one month, the team deleted the website and stopped replying to emails. Investors were duped by a very convincing whitepaper, and actors had been hired to appear in photographs promoting the project. No investor funds have ever been recovered. Centra: The SEC put an end to fundraising for the Centra ICO and charged the founders Robert Farkas and Sohrab Sharma with orchestrating a fraudulent ICO after they raised $32 million USD. They were promoting the ability to develop financial products backed by VISA and Mastercard, though it was later found that neither partnership was real. One of the major red flags in the Centra project was the use of celebrity endorsements for publicity, reportedly paying champion boxer Floyd Mayweather a significant sum to promote their project. Who wants to leave their Blockchain investment decisions up to Floyd Mayweather, regardless of his unbelievable skill as a boxer and regardless of his own financial success? He should still not influence where you invest your money!
Ponzi Schemes: Bitconnect: This is the most infamous Ponzi scheme in the history of cryptocurrency, and certainly the most damaging. Bitconnect was a Bitcoin-based project that rose to an all-time high of $463 per token on the back of a fictitious trading bot. The Bitconnect scam operated by paying dividends to users, proportional to the number of tokens they held and the number of referrals they made. The BCC tokens were exchanged for the users’ Bitcoin, and the highly sophisticated and wildly successful trading bot would trade BTC for them and distribute profits as dividends. The value of the dividends offered was approximately 1% of the initial investment per day. In other words, that is approximately 3,780% per year in cumulative gain! The referral system was capitalized upon most heavily by many of the biggest crypto YouTube channels, including CryptoNick and Trevon James, both of whom are now under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Shortly after the Bitconnect Token reached its all-time high, they received cease and desist orders from the security regulators of Texas and North Carolina, which caused the owners of the Bitconnect exchange to shut down operations, and the price to plummet.
Davorcoin: Davorcoin was a lending platform very similar to Bitconnect. And Davorcoin was farcically promoted by the same Trevon James crypto Youtuber who promoted Bitconnect, and is currently under investigation by the FBI for promoting Ponzi schemes. The Texas State Securities Board, in likening Davor to Bitconnect, stated that “DavorCoin is telling investors they can earn lucrative profits by investing in a lending program based on a new cryptocurrency known as davorcoin. Investors allegedly purchase davorcoin and then lend it to DavorCoin”. Davorcoin promptly plunged from an all-time high of $180 to very close to zero after a cease and desist order was made against them on the 2nd of February 2018. Useless Ethereum Token: Despite brazenly stating in the name of the project that the token has no use, the UET managed to raise $340,000 in its crowdsale, and saw a significant pump of over 300% on the HitBTC exchange in February of 2018. The scam was an obvious case of pump and dump, with the total trading volume for UET crashing back down to as low as $3 per day, after reaching as high as $350,000 per day during the pump.
Indications of Scam Projects
It is currently an unfortunate consequence of the decentralized nature of cryptocurrency, but there is a distinct lack of recourse for scammed investors. It is wise to become as well-acquainted with the various indicators of good and bad ICOs as you possibly can. In weighing the factors that will allow you to avoid expensive mistakes, ask yourself in whose favor are the terms of the ICO slanted, yours or the teams? To what extent are you actually likely to profit from this investment? Cryptocurrency is inherently a grey area, whether you are investing in it or not. Investing is another inherently grey area, no matter what the area or object of investing might be. Laws and regulations are not always able to keep up. Trying to define and prove what was or was not a scam is not likely to be as simple as the scammed investor would want it to be. A project can be set up in certain ways to avoid being technically classified or provable as a scam, but the unprepared investor can still be burnt or scammed just as badly. Now we look at more individual indicators that can help you form a valid impression whether or not an ICO or even a fully-fledged exchange-listed coin is a scam or a bona fide investment opportunity.
Common Signposts
Contrasting Scam & Legitimate Projects
Presale Bonus/Token Release If the ICO allots massive bonuses to team members, you may leave yourself open to getting dumped on by presale investors if you buy when the project tokens are listed on an exchange. Likewise, if the project has a short lock-up period for developers and founders, you run the risk of them selling as soon as the token is listed on a major exchange. The token release schedule for the founders of a worthwhile project should show long-term team commitment to that project. The Jibrel Network team tokens will be locked up for 5 years before release, and they had no early investor bonus in the main sale. Both of these factors instilled confidence in the JNT ICO investors, and the tokens were sold out weeks before the ICO was due to end. No Presale lock up If Presale investor tokens are not locked up at all for any period after listing, that could easily be a set up for an exit scam after the initial listing. No presale lockup for early investor tokens is a crystal clear warning, the project may be fatally rigged toward those in the inner circle, with little commitment to the long term health or success of that project.
Unsolicited Offers or Unasked for Additions to Groups Characters running scam projects will often add you to Telegram groups out of the blue or send you unsolicited emails with information about their project. Telegram is the most widely used messaging app in the cryptocurrency community and you should familiarize yourself with it to keep yourself in the loop for specific projects in which you invest as well as all kinds of other relevant crypto info. You can adjust the settings on the Telegram app to disallow anonymous additions to cryptocurrency projects if you find yourself bombarded with offers by scammers. Reputable projects at the ICO stage will spread by word of mouth, or by eloquent and meaningful articles posted on their Medium page. A project with serious potential does not need to actively seek participants for their ICO like that. They will often be able to fill their ICO hard cap in a matter of hours, or even just minutes!
Anonymous Team
Alarm bells, again, immediately, if the project has minimal online presence. The individual team members could be mere fabrications. The entire project could be a farce by utterly inexperienced characters. What if the project leaders are simply unaware of the importance of a strong social media profile? That in itself would be too strange to ignore. Top-level projects will have team members with experience in crypto and the LinkedIn accounts for those members will be easily accessible right there on the project website. You should be able to easily see and evaluate each individual’s experience in their field and ascertain what they bring to the project team. Bitconnect’s anonymous team should have been the only deterrent prospective investors needed to discourage them from putting money into that doomed project. Ethhorse, a current project with anonymous founders and operators should be steered clear of at all costs for the same reasons.
Community Atmosphere
The subreddits or Telegram groups of scam projects will often feature moderators that do not allow any kind of criticism in the group chat. If, in the process of your due diligence, you encounter didactic admins that only wish to silence your questioning of certain aspects of the whitepaper or mechanism of the tokenomics, you should be concerned. Similarly if you see a coherent critical reply attacked by many different users who refuse to engage the substance of the point being made, that may be a subreddit infested with bots. Projects that have nothing to hide will allow free debate in the chat. Ideally, they hope to develop a positive community that is itself an asset to the long-term success and overall strength of the project. Good projects do not need to automatically brand all criticism as Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD).
Whitepaper
One common tactic of scammers is to produce a whitepaper that uses too many buzzwords, and deliberately obfuscates and overcomplicates the explanation of the problem and/or its solution. A good whitepaper clearly and concisely lays out the problem and answer, as well as provides compelling arguments why a Blockchain solution is preferable to the current solution. Another point of concern is a whitepaper that gives unrealistic time frames and goals. Bitconnect’s almost comically optimistic profit projections are a prime example of this, as are the 1,354% yearly gains promised by Plexcoin. Respectable projects will set out development timescales in terms of quarters or years, rather than offering immediate profit projections, which are simply a red flag.
Advisors/Connections in the Cryptoworld
The most prestigious projects will already have partnerships made before the ICO stage, and the worst ones, i.e. the scams, will not mention any such partnerships. Icon (ICX) for example was spawned from a South Korean project named The Loop, a collaboration between 3 Korean universities and the DAYLI Financial Group. They boasted an advisory panel consisting of the legendary investor Don Tapscott, Jehan Chu and crowdfunding expert Jason Best. On top of a solid team of advisors, good projects will also be visible at major Blockchain events such as the Consensus, and the World Blockchain Forum, etc. Scam projects will be unable to inspire this same level in confidence. As an investor, you should sense a certain presence and expect a certain feeling of trust that should guide you in your investments. After all, it is actually a people-to-people thing you are doing.
Key Stress points upon the Timeline to Identify Scam Projects Post Whitepaper Release The period in the immediate aftermath of the release of the whitepaper can also be decisive in establishing the validity of a project. How a team copes with the roadmap that they have laid out for themselves is key. Valuable insight into the operational efficiency and commitment to the project can be gleaned from the quality of and amount of code committed to GitHub. If you have any experience in computer programming you can see how clean and orderly the code is, which gives insight into the skill of the developers, and in turn the quality of project leaders’ decision-making in hiring team members. Scam projects will have little or no code committed to GitHub, or at best it will be copied and pasted from other projects just to cover their tracks. Start of ICO Sometimes, a scam project, or other project in which you would be better off not investing, will change the terms of the ICO just before the ICO starts. The Key (TKY) ICO doubled the price of tokens on the day before the ICO was due to take place, because the price of NEO had risen so drastically. Currently, the TKY token price is still only half of its ICO price. Initial investors are faced with the prospect of a 50% loss on their investment.
Key Stress points upon the Timeline to Identify Scam Projects
Exchange Listing
Some particularly greedy scammers will create a scam project with the intent of selling tokens in the ICO for BTC and ETH, and then pumping and dumping their share of the tokens immediately after listing. The team of fraudsters behind Monero Gold used this method after the crowdfunding of their useless ERC-20 token. After listing on CoinExchange.io, the team dumped their tokens until the exchange finally ceased trading. Although it is not uncommon for ICO tokens to sold after listing (just like can happen with shares of stock after an IPO), if the price does not stabilize and massive sell walls are continually placed, a scam is likely taking place and the token is being dumped.
Real World Example of Scam Customers
Fake Ethereum Twitter giveaway
You may have noticed Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin’s twitter handle has been changed to Vitalik “Not giving away Eth” Buterin in recent months. This is because a group of devious scammers had created fake accounts with almost exact replicas of his profile (deviating by only one character). The fake accounts promised to deposit 1 whole ETH for every 0.1 ETH the potential sucker deposited into the wallet address provided by the scammer. These fake account “Ether giveaway” scam tweets were set up to be sent in just a matter of seconds after the real person tweeted, and usually always appear immediately after the tweet of the real public figure. Fake bot profiles then came into play, thanking the fake Vitalik, or fake Elon Musk, for holding up their end of the bargain and depositing the ETH as promised. One scammer, or group of scammers, managed to fill a wallet up with almost $20 thousand worth of ETH, which they transferred out, never to be seen or heard from again.
Effect of Scam Customers, Upon the Affected Parties
Of course, this is no fun for the targeted public figure either. They need to take steps to avoid being targeted again. This will mean changing their handle, their username, or making their accounts private. However, the injured party with whom we are most concerned is the unfortunate scammed social media user, who has no chance whatsoever of getting his or her funds back, ever. It is a harsh lesson to learn. But it is a fact of crypto reality. Nearly every one that trades crypto will at least be exposed to frauds or scams in one way or another. In this case, we think it is better to learn about scams by studying them, rather than learn from your own unfortunate and expensive experience. In the case of Mr. Buterin, these incidents were awful public relations for the Ethereum project. It had only been a few years since cryptocurrency as a whole was primarily associated with criminality and seedy transactions on the Darkweb. Any connection with unscrupulous behavior is best avoided at all costs. Negative associations could have been particularly damaging for Ethereum’s brand because the vast majority of ICO fraud is committed using the ERC-20 token as the template for the scam tokens.
Effect of Scam Customers on the Market
Any and all the scamming or fraudulent behavior in the cryptocurrency ecosystem is bound to have a negative impact on the speed at which mainstream uptake finally takes place. Cryptocurrencies, as an emerging asset class, will be painted in the worst possible light. Crypto is aiming to, and is in fact in the process of, causing great disruption in traditional centralized finance and business. Mainstream media organizations are also part of that traditional centralized economy. Press coverage will be damning. Something is happening here, but Mr. Jones doesn’t know what it is.
Legal Recourse for Scams
We clearly understand, there is a possibility of being scammed. We know the scams are happening. The SEC has made some arrests and actually charged people for operating fraudulent ICOs. But it is a struggle to deal with the flood of ICOs coming from anywhere at any time. The SEC filed charges against two founders of a purported financial services startup for orchestrating a fraudulent ICO that raised more than $32million from thousands of investors. As you know from the ICOs we have covered so far, the lack of regulation allows for direct contact and dealing between the entrepreneurs, business owners and potential investors. While we believe this is a blessing according to the founding principles of Bitcoin and other alternate Cryptocurrencies, because it frees us from traditional roadblocks, middle-men, and all kinds of time-consuming procedures; it also leaves investors in a place where there is often little to no hope of ever recovering funds lost in fraudulent schemes.
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