Millennium Post

Millions of $ feared lost in Bitcoin scam

Leung Yiu-chung said his office recently received reports from dozens of investors in Hong Kong who paid a total of HKD 40 million ($5.16 million) into the scheme run online by MyCoin, but the total loss may be vastly more.

“The number of cases is increasing. These two days I received calls about more than 30 cases. We estimate more than 3,000 people and HKD 3 billion are involved,” he said. One investor said she spent HKD 1.3 million in swap options for the virtual currency last September. She said salespersons had told her she would recoup her investment in four months and make around 200-300 per cent profit in one year. The cryptocurrency was created in 2009 by a computer algorithm designed by one or more anonymous people. It has since become a form of e-money that offers a largely anonymous payment system and can be stored either virtually or on a user’s hard drive.

But its development has been marred by concerns about links to illegal activities and a lack of oversight. Tokyo-based MtGox, one of the longest-established Bitcoin exchanges, collapsed due to a suspected theft worth nearly half a billion dollars.
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