Suspected Cryptocurrency Scam MetaForce Spreads Quickly on Chinese Internet

(Yicai) February 28: MetaForce, a decentralized online platform offering various services such as cryptocurrencies, non-fungible tokens, gaming and Web3, is taking China by storm as Bitcom price recovers, forcing Chinese regulators to remind people of the dangers of pyramid schemes and fundraising scams.

MetaForce is a spin-off of Forsage, a smart contract program launched in February 2020 by Lado Okhotnikov, who in February of last year was convicted of operating a Ponzi and pyramid scheme involving up to $340 million by the US Department of Justice. Joined. Forsage was also banned from Philippine central banks in 2022.

Despite the regulatory backlash, MetaForce, which launched in July 2022, is gaining traction in up to 100 countries and has so far amassed 1.3 million investors. And it is proving very popular in China.

At its core is a cryptocurrency called ForceCoin, which runs on the Ethereum blockchain. Depending on the amount people invest, they are given different levels of membership and a certain amount of ForceCoin, a senior trader promoting the project told Yicai.

ForceCoin owners can expect a big reward when the virtual currency goes public, as its value is expected to increase more than 500 times, the person said. Buyers can also profit from the membership program as they receive kickbacks when they bring other people into the program. The higher their membership level, the greater the kickback, and above a certain level, they can receive payments for performances from those in the chain below them.

This is very similar to a pyramid scheme, said one coin trader.

People have been found to introduce others to buy ForceCoin and this is similar to a pyramid scheme or a form of scam, the office in charge of combating illegal financing in Pucheng county, central Shaanxi province, said in November last year.

People should be vigilant about Metaverse-related activities that could be related to illegal fundraising, fraud and other actions that break the law, the Dalian branch of the country's securities regulator said on February 4.

ForceCoin is traded through BitgetWallet, a cryptocurrency wallet that is only available in the TestFlight app on the Apple AppStore. Developers can invite up to 10,000 users to test an app on TestFlight and thus avoid AppStore restrictions, a source said.

ForceCoin purchases and sales are made through Dai, which is an ERC20 token on the Ethereum blockchain that has a stable value of one US dollar. Transactions between ForceCoin and Dai were carried out manually for a while, the person said. ForceCoin is not traded on an exchange, so there is no stable public exchange market.

Editors: Xu Wei, Kim Taylor

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