ICO scams are unfortunately not uncommon in the world of cryptocurrency. These scams can take many forms and can leave investors with nothing but lost funds. In this article, we will explore some real-life examples of ICO scams.

  1. PlexCoin.  PlexCoin was launched in August 2017 and promised to provide a global currency for the unbanked. However, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accused the company of fraud and froze its assets. The SEC claimed that PlexCoin raised $15 million from thousands of investors through false promises of a 13-fold return on investment within a month. The founder of PlexCoin, Dominic Lacroix, was later sentenced to two months in jail and ordered to pay a fine of $100,000.

  2. Pincoin and iFan. Pincoin and iFan were two ICOs launched by the Vietnamese company Modern Tech. The company claimed that Pincoin was a digital currency backed by the company's investments in the real estate and cryptocurrency markets. iFan was marketed as a social network token for celebrities. The company raised $660 million from over 32,000 investors before disappearing with the funds. Investors were left with worthless tokens and no way to recover their funds.

  3. Bitconnect. Bitconnect was a lending platform that promised high returns to investors. The company claimed to have a trading bot that could generate profits for investors. Bitconnect raised over $2.5 billion in market capitalization before it was shut down by regulators. The company was accused of operating a Ponzi scheme, where earlier investors were paid with the funds from later investors. Investors lost millions of dollars when the platform shut down.

  4. OneCoin. OneCoin was a Ponzi scheme disguised as a cryptocurrency. The company claimed to have its own blockchain and promised high returns to investors. However, the company had no blockchain, and the tokens had no real-world value. OneCoin raised over $4 billion from investors before it was shut down by regulators. The founder of the company, Ruja Ignatova, disappeared in 2017 and has not been seen since.

  5. Prodeum. Prodeum was a small ICO that aimed to create a blockchain-based platform for tracking fruits and vegetables. The project raised $11 in Ethereum before disappearing without a trace. The company's website was replaced with a message that simply read "penis" and the project's social media accounts were deleted.

It is important to do your due diligence before investing in any ICO. Make sure to research the project, the team behind it, and the market for the tokens. Always be wary of promises of high returns and be cautious of any ICO that seems too good to be true. Remember, if something seems like a scam, it probably is.