This crypto scammer ended up scamming himself on Pancakeswap |
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For the first time in history, investors in the “wild west” of cryptocurrencies have been targeted by a real-world scammer, who re-purposed a well-known scam to defraud crypto investors. The scammer, who has been dubbed “pancakes” (because he was “scamming on pancakes”), started a new cryptocurrency called bitcoincash (BCC) in August 2017, and then began promoting it on the popular social media platform, Reddit. To promote his own new currency, pancakes transferred popular cryptocurrencies (like bitcoin) to other users in exchange for BCC (and sometimes vice versa) by offering to send “free” BCC to anyone who would send him bitcoin. He then told them to hold
Cryptocurrency has been on a roller-coaster in 2018, with an unprecedented surge in the market value of all cryptocurrencies, followed by a steep downtrend in market value as of the end of January. It’s a volatile market, but it’s not so difficult to make money in it. Just ask the scammer who tried to steal $25,000 from the Pancakeswap DApp, and accidentally sent the money to himself.
There is something very satisfying about hitting karma. No more than a crypto-currency scammer got what he deserved. A Reddit user posted a message on the subreddit r/pancakeswap, the public forum of the decentralized exchange Pancakeswap, asking for help in recovering funds from the BEP-20 token he created.
It turned out to be a fraudulent token that mimics an existing, unrated project to mine cryptocurrencies on mobile phones. Whether it’s Ethereum or Binance Smart Chain (BSC), anyone can create a token. But because BSC is much cheaper to use, it seems scammers are making it their primary network.
crypto scam loses
In a post that has since been deleted, a Reddit user who was at the center of this storm addressed the community with this message:
Hello, I created a token on pancakeswap but now I want my money back. They say I can’t return it because the price is too high. So, basically, I lost. 366$ ? Please help me.
Analysis of the information revealed that the user created a PI token while selling it under the guise of a BSC token for another cryptocurrency with the same name. The user’s post history shows that he is promoting an affiliate link for this other cryptocurrency.
However, when he tried to withdraw his initial investment, the smart contract prevented him from doing so because withdrawing would have significantly affected the price of the token due to its low liquidity. It is unclear at this time if this was purely a protective action by BSC, or if someone else swept the matter under the rug to trigger the protective action.
In any case, all the responses to his post asking for help were not very sympathetic.
Binance Smart Chain Scam
BSC was launched last September as a parallel blockchain to Binance Chain. It enabled the creation of smart contracts for tokens on the BSC network and introduced a new betting mechanism on the NBB.
The goal is to compete with DeFi on Ethereum, and with cheaper and faster transactions, users are flocking to BSC. The total value of blockchain (TVL) in the BSC has reached $43 billion in six months. By comparison, it took nearly four years for TVL in Ethereum to reach $65 billion.
The OCS has recently been confronted with a number of fraud cases. The biggest case so far was the MeerKat Finance case in early March, which netted the scammers a total of $31 million, of which BUSD 14 million and BNB 72,635.
But there were many others, including PopcornSwap, Zap Finance, Tin Finance and TurtleDEX.
While Binance takes user safety seriously and takes proactive steps to compensate victims, as in the case of the WineSwap withdrawal fraud, the fact remains that anyone can create a smart contract token.
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