How To Create An ICO Scam in 5 Simple Steps

in #scam6 years ago (edited)

DISCLAIMER: The intention of this post is not to actually teach you how to scam people (it’s wrong you idiot!) but to raise awareness on how easy it is to do and to fall for. A lot of newcomers are getting familiar with the world of cryptocurrency and looking for investment options so having as many warnings out there as possible is never enough. Better be safe than sorry.

Let’s start!

Step 1: Name And Brand

Like naming your high school band this sounds easy on paper but it shouldn’t be overlooked, a great catchy name can start selling the idea right from the start. You don’t want to use the world coin, that’s so 2013. So pick a name that sounds ethereal (did I went too far that with the pun?).

Effortless, celestial, interconnection...yeah! that’s the good stuff. It should also have a modern social media app ring to it but don’t overdo it or it will sound too gimmicky.

BARDO (BDO) sounds great to me!

The Tibetan word bardo (བར་དོ་ Wylie: bar do) means literally "intermediate state"—also translated as "transitional state" or "in-between state" or "liminal state".

A generic symbol to accompany the logo will do, just don’t get too fancy and keep it simple. And finally we will name our tokens eONS.

Step 2 - Getting Your Hands Dirty

In the immortal words of Steve Ballmer: DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS!

You need to show the faces of the people behind this world changing project. So get some at, come up with some common names (so they are very hard to google) and add the most ridiculous resume you can think of.

Think of these guys as if they had been working on the decentralization of the Antarctica resources for decades. They helped develop the new Svalbard Global Seed Vault sorting method. King penguins swear by them. Albatros don’t get caught in fishing nets anymore thanks to these guys. I’m not sure why that used to happen but who cares right?

The team is complete, just add one marketing girl who will bring in the herd home.

Now get a cool background possibly with nodes and space/constellation undertones. We are going to the moon, get it? It’s brilliant!

And finally, don’t forget some icons to describe Bardo features.

Step 3 - Buy Several Bitcointalk Accounts

Bitcointalk is the most active Bitcoin forum on the internet, they basically grew together. Any developer, investor or enthusiast is familiar with it and almost all cryptocurrency projects are first announced there. The thing is, you can actually buy accounts there, they have value because they can participate in Signature Campaigns and earn Bitcoins based on their ranks. An old and active member is usually respected by the community.

We would need to buy 4 or 5 Member ranks and one Sr or Hero (these will cost some money). The last one will be the one from where you will make the announcement, the others will bump the thread and pump the interest from time to time, keeping in check the sea of comments, FUD and other questions.

This would cost close to 0.5-0.8 BTC depending on the quality of the accounts you get (previous post quality and trust for example). Don’t forget to create a self-moderated thread so you can delete any accusations or hot questions right off the bat.

Step 4: The Pitch

Make it as complicated as possible, throwing so much mumbo-jumbo as you possible can. Keywords are: Tokens, Assets, Blockchain, Ledger, Disruptive, Decentralized, Shares, Platform, Intermediary, Publishing, Trustless, Fixed, Digital.

Create a new Proof Of System! As many know the most popular are Proof Of Work and Proof Of Stake. And hybrid of these won’t cut it anymore so you need to get creative. Proof of Incarnation sounds great, it involves checking for certain unadulterated information to create new blocks or something like that, we can revise this later!

BARDO is the new disruptive tokenizing ledger for the development of digital products and services on a decentralized trustless platform. Featuring the innovative Proof Of Incarnation, BARDO Crowdsale is a one in a lifetime opportunity to become part of blockchain technology’s future.

Get your eONS (Bardo tokens) Now!

Step 5: Putting it all together

It’s time to complete this malevolent puzzle, my horns sure are ready!

Compile all graphics and create images you can embed in the project thread. Getting domain is a great idea too, you don’t need to build an actual site, just add a countdown clock widget, a subscribe/sign up button and an Ether and BTC address and you are good to go!

Remember to pump up the raised funds figure daily so users get reassured that a lot of money is getting invested.

That's all folks, now go and start scamming some crypto newbies!

Whales are commiting jellyfish genocide. Did you know we are wise and ancient creatures too?



Day7FvhX4AEP06V.jpg large.jpg

Funny how now the ICO bubble is going like crazy :P

Great Post! I used it to help identify this one as a scam. Here is a textbook example of a SCAM AIOS All in One Social Network.

This comment has received a 0.31 % upvote from @bellyrub thanks to: @isacoin.

This comment has received a 0.41 % upvote from @bellyrub thanks to: @isacoin.

Where can I invest in Bardo? nsounds great


thanks @moonjelly
For many ICOs the single biggest problem is governance, or a lack of it, closely followed by clarity of how the founders’ feet will be held to the fire to ensure they deliver what was promised for investors. Happy that Tezos Foundation was not in my ICO's portfolio

Just found this article couple of our ago that is also stating similar points:

Whahaha.. LOL this is really a good one... and an eyeopener, maybe i trusted some to quick. Great post!

Thanks! Its a little exaggerated of course but sadly not so far off from some recent examples.

Following you now, waiting for my eONS!

We'll get right back at you very soon, thanks for participating in the ICO!

Beautiful. I haven't seen the #satire tag being used as much as the #funny tag, if you do another one.

Haha, yeah, sadly there are some actual scams going on right now on Bitcointalk. They don't even follow the proper steps, just 1, 2 and 4 are enough!

it's hilarious. Pity it's so true!

Excellent. Love this. My only point of critique would be that the icons of BDO's features do not include a banana for scale.

You're right, it does look a little shady without the banana!

This would be a valid critique except you forgot to add step 6: get coin listed on poloniex and pump it up with fake news written by bitcoin news media shills everyone thinks are actual reporters.

and Step 7: Dump coins until the trading volume is non-existent, then slowly accumulate, then return to step 6.

If Step 6 does not work, you need to return to Step 1 and start over.

You've been awarded 1000 eONS!

Whao! that's almost 30 cents!

It's the ICO season. This post should be pumped to awareness! People think that just looking at a page of an ICO will tell them if it's a scam. But the truth is that if you don't search the team, you will get scammed.. and sometimes even though you search the team that may happen.
Thank you, I will follow you. <3

It is a really nice post.
It was ten month ago but it is still the same today, and it becomes more and more difficult to trust a new project.

ICO bubble Madness: Addy Crezee #BlockShow #BlockiTalki

I wrote a post about my own view on the whole bubble thing. My point is very simple, if each one of us do not make their part, we can ruin the party. If we get enough bad examples out on the street we'll sure piss off a bunch of regulators and traditional investors, and that will likely limit the whole of crypto and blockchain economy's growth.

A post before it's time, ICOs are crazy now lol.

lol yep

why not do it legitimately ? it's hard work to me.

lol now i know very important info

You should repost this!

Fascinating, I always wondered how ETC came to be.

They didn't even follow the "proper" steps!

Your right they forgot to add developers, how silly of them

Lol, well they did after the fact, the definition of vaporware.

Next level. I'm linking it in today's article for Dash Force News.

Great post! ICO not scam. Contact us and we will give you individual customized solution for your business requirements at [email protected]

Read more article >>> How to create an ICO

I need to get myself some of this BARDOs!

$10 Free worth of Eth tokens!! Authorship ICO you will receive 75 ATS tokens! just need an Eth Wallet!

The Tierion ICO raised $25MM, but there’s still speculation that it’s no different than the scam ICOs going on right now. Check out some strategies to make sure that you can maximise profit from an ICO, Hopefully investors aren’t losing their money just yet!

Ha ha, brilliant... I'm almost left with a 'when does the BARDO ICO start' kinda feeling....

Quite old, but still up to date. It reminds me startups a lot, but the people investing can't spot the BS, unlike the institutional investors.

damn this ones good! :'D

It's a pity today there are so many scammers. We are doing everything possible to make our ICO project the strongest, popular, intersting, without a drop of doubt in our truthfulness!

wow, there will be many scammers come to ICO :)

haha funny. now I know how the scammers do it

Where can I get those precious eONS? I hope I didn't missed on them. It looks like a great project. :P

It's a pity that this isn't a real coin. I would have bought so much. Proof of incarnation. You should have created it just to prove your point.

Great Article. It had an impact. After I read you article.... well I exposed one.

Bardos, you can take my money to buy your yacht. I'm totally sold.

WOW. thanks for the post. =D


awesome its not satire at all, it is true. I would say 97%++ of the ICO are scams and worse still, many don't even have block chain expert to apply blockchain in their said businesses?

Look like there are too much black money chasing those ICOs ? Otherwise why would they invest without evening remotely knowing what it is?


Fact assault

A Scan For Scam: Beware of the World of Battles ICO

Recently, there have been a lot of messages about World of Battles being a scam scheme. Coinidol has previously published an articleon their project. They promised 37% annual growth and a $2 billion market cap in 2018. Doesn’t seem like a fairytale, does it? Besides, the e-Sports industry is rapidly developing, so why not indeed?
However, recently, the web exploded with angry messages about the project being a scam. Some links didn’t work, there were no tokens distributed so far, no verified source code, and the address they use is a regular wallet, not a smart contract.

Read the full article:

This is hilariously accurate, A+

That was a fun read! Crazy thing is some people have really done this and raised millions

A lot about this is branding and using a fancy website and using facebook to make some advertisements and hype it up with some fake news like, 500% rice in price in 7 days!

to create a scam i think it is much easier than you describe, you can ask fpr private key

Lol. Great logo design btw. You could make it into an actually currency/scam.

this is the sad truth, but yet people will always fall for things like this. People will still buy in, create hype, but the market will always find its true value.

bottom line,
if you make money = legit coin
if you lose money = scam coin

this is gold - i like your tech knowledge and sense of humour too -- are you Australian ? i follow you now and am glad i found this blog -Keep rockin -David

Good post - this deserves a bit more attention but I don't seem to have the option to re-steem.

Frighteningly true, and very funny! Thanx for the great post. I will follow you.

this was hilarious yet somewhat true.

Hello, write slightly off topic, but still. We are Araneobit - money transfer system based on the blockchain. The Commission for money transfer is set independently.
You can invest money

Any idea how they get those animated node backgrounds? Do they use GIFs? I'm kind of in the process of making something like this (background, not the ico scam) and would be interested if anyone knew the best way to do it without increasing page size too much.

BlockTower now has an official telegram channel! They will be posting insider information on new ICO's they will be investing into. Make sure you join so you can get involved on the next ICO!
Google BlockTower if you want to learn more about the company. We’ve been featured on magazines like Forbes and Bloomberg!
Channel :

SPECIAL LENDING WEEK!!! FIXED INTEREST RATES during the first 7 days!!Loopx.jpg!
LoopX is building up its community now!

Pay out intrest during 30 days lending are in BTC.

Sing up


Where I can buy these eONS ????

Hey @moonjelly,

This is a great article and has definitely aged well!

I just wrote a post that references this one and would appreciate your thoughts if you have a moment.


Awesome posts and puns :p .. I have a similar article where I talk about how we can identify such scams.. Please take a look at it and upvote it if you like it.

Good job!
We search the shitty scammers and write about them ^^

This is really an interesting topic and insightful this is very important to take note and action

We love this post.

Most of the ICO's these days are like that. Don't forget the fake TG members - bots.

thanks for the sharing !

Take a bow! That is some beautiful, beautiful stuff! Accurate as hell. Practically a time machine to 2017:) I'd also throw in a couple of 'advisors' with real faces and some experience and not too high self-esteem, who'd be working hard alongside the honorable ‘team’.

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