ICO Platform Benebit Disappears With $2.7M USD Of Investor Funds

Crime, ICO News, News | January 25, 2018 By:

The organizers of the Benebit initial coin offering (ICO) have allegedly pulled an exit scam after raising an estimated $2.7 million to $4 million.

Benebit described itself as “a global decentralized ecosystem that enables interactions between brands, companies, and consumers over blockchain technology. Benebit simplifies and introduces a new way for businesses and consumers to interact, which drives traffic, increases loyalty and trust, and enhances convenience and security.”

As of January 22, Benebit vanished from the internet. The Benebit official website was shut down, along with its other social media accounts. Its Telegram channel, however, is still active, as hired moderators were responsible for updating the channel.

Before the news of the scam broke out, Benebit had wide support, with over 9,000 Telegram followers and a positive rating on ICO review sites. Benebit reportedly spent almost $500,000 on market promotion, one of the reasons why Benebit was regarded as being a legitimate project.

The scam came to light after someone spotted that photographs of the Benebit team were stolen from a British boys’ school website. This happened in the pre-ICO stage. The pre-sale was promoted by the ICO Syndicate, a well-known name in the ICO market. ICO Syndicate said that it verified the identity of the Benebit CEO with a passport check, but after the news of Benebit’s disappearance broke, it conceded that the passport was a fake.

ICO Watchlist, an ICO investment site, said Benebit was a junior listed project on its platform and it has been pulled down since the report about the scam surfaced.

“Our hearts go out to those who might have lost their funds to this project,” said ICO Watchlist. “As we consistently remind people, ICOs are high-risk ventures, and it is imperative that investors do their own due diligence before making commitments.”

Global financial regulators have issued warnings about the risks associated with ICOs. Potential investors should undertake due diligence to understand the risks involved before engaging with any company promoting such offerings.