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Author Topic: 🌍 Guidelines, how to spot a scam ICO & report effectively. ✔  (Read 517 times)
Coolcryptovator
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Scam exposer !!! Let's expose scam ICO together.


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September 03, 2018, 07:32:15 PM
Merited by Welsh (10), suchmoon (4), Zapo (3), LoyceV (2), o_e_l_e_o (2), DdmrDdmr (2), ICOEthics (2), marlboroza (1), Wipro (1), Potato Chips (1), Iamdeadlyz (1), SuiMikira (1), vphasitha01 (1), TalkStar (1)
 #1

I don't know if there other guidelines to spot scam ICO. I can't found appropriate topic. Anyway , everyone have own thought & and experience. I am going to share my thought and experience, How to spot a scam ICO .

As well everyone know what is ICO/crowd-sale. In short description, ICO or crowd-sale is the one of famous fund raising opportunity from people's.

I always care about some point before spot a scam ICO. I will describe below:



  • Domain Information:
Domain information is a important part to spot a scam ICO. A newly registered domain create many questions. If I found domain registration below one month, it's suspicious for me. I will consider it primary scam attempt. Because they just decide suddenly to launch an ICO for raise fund. It's not a good practice. If domain registered before 3 or 4 month, that means they have well planed from began.
However about domain registration, other point is owner identity. If there is no owner identity on domain information obviously there is risk involvement. That means they use a service to protect identity. Although most of ICO hide their identy, some of them are got success. It doesn't mean all ICO will be successful. So consider research about domain information before invest an ICO. You can use Whois website to find all information about domain.

  • Unprofessional Website Design:
A website design indicate about skill of developer team.  Very rare ICO's using unique design. They just simply buy a template and higher a cheap developer for modify template. Some time I surprised once I see a template sold more than 2K times, so how many template on the market ? And do you know how many coin listed on CMC ? Approx 1900+ only. So who bought too much template ? Answer is obvious scammer. I noticed some of ICO even never removed default logo from infographic chart. So , should I trust them ? Should I consider it a legit ICO? I don't think so. So always consider design professionalism before invest any ICO. If an ICO not have a experienced developer obviously their plane isn't fair.

  • Website Content Plagiarism/Stolen:
I don't know what about other's, but I found many ICO's plagiarized or copy paste from other. I consider it stolen content. Most of ICO doing that stigmatized work. It could be easily find if you are involved with ICO's. You can see almost ICO using similar content or same content to introduce themselves. If a team not able to write unique and something new about the project so how we can expect a good result from them ? Basically an legit ICO will never follow others. They should show their creativity on their project. It's not a story writing. Just copy content from any other successful ICO for encourage investors, obviously I will consider it a scam attempt.


  • Fake Developer/Core Team:
Fake team is the main problem now. It's spread like a virus. I called it fake viruses. Team & whitepaper is backbone of an ICO. If team if totally fake so what will happen ? Fake means stolen picture from other's, obviously a scammer team behind of every project. Using fake team it's clear proof of scam. I never compromised with fake team. If team aren't existing, how we expect a good result from any ICO? I don't think it's possible. If a team don't want to scam , so why they will hide their identity ? Stolen identity of their it's a good practice? Never, it couldn't  be fair. For me fake team is more dangerous from no team. Because is scammed by fake team claim will goes to others. If no team on the website that means investors aware about their absences. So it's depend on investors should be invest or not. If invest such as scam project, of course he deserve scam. Team can be identify easily. Just use by few online tools. I have a topic regarding how to find fake team. You can read it to know.
So please check team also carefully before invest on a ICO.


  • Plagiarism & Unprofessional Whitepaper:
As I mention above team and whitepaper is backbone of an ICO. So all the details about project should be reflect on the whitepaper. But most of ICO follow others whitepaper. It's not just guesses, I saw it practical. Direct copy paste from other whitepaper. But unfortunately they forgot to change token symbol in one point. So what does mean ? Obviously they copy paste from others. It's not very hard to find if you related with ICO. Because if you read all project's whitepaper than more easy to find plagiarism. Although there is some online tools to check plagiarism. It's very important subject to read whitepaper. Whitepaper will describe about their aim. Vision, roadmap, problem, solution, uses of token, block chain technology, Soft Cap, hard cap, token distribution, fund allocation etc every thing should be clear explanation on whitepaper. If they never explained briefly than it's indicate to scam. ICO means not just create a token and sold on market. There should be proper explanation about token & project.
So don't miss to read whitepaper before invest on ICO. Although personally I don't like to invest on ICO. But people's are doing that. However I never encourage you for invest on ICO personally. This topic just to spot scam ICO. So if you can spot any ICO that means you are safe huge fund.


  • Corrupted Roadmap:
May be you are thinking roadmap how could be corrupted. But it's really possible. Corrupted means meaningless roadmap. Some of roadmap you will find like a description with token distribution. Like development date, token deployment date, pre-sale date , ICO date etc. You don't think this is look like a corruption? I consider it's a corruption. Because no meaning of roadmap if there is no clear future plane. It's important how they are going to increase their token value. What is the future plan, it will on the roadmap. However check the roadmap it's actually worthy or not, or just copy paste from others.


  • Existing businesses:
It's also an important element of ICO. If any ICO project had a potential existing business that means there is a chance of success. Most of ICO hasn't any existing business and they try to raise found. Some are use fund for increase value of their token after ICO. But it's very rare, most of them are just skip with fund. As a result even token listed on exchange price will drop. So somehow you will get scam. Those project already had good platform for invest raised fund it's could consider pretty safe. But reality is no one can say who will skip with fund. It's depend on team mentality. We should check their background as much as possible.


  • No Real Concept:
What is concept ? Concept means a platform, which platform they are launching with ICO. For example, exchange , advertising , marketplace, gaming etc. If there is no clear concept obviously it's a scam indicator. Just create a website it doesn't mean they are legit or they are going to success. It's very important that how they are going to build their platform. It's look almost ICO using same concept. That's why scam are increasing on the market. We should look how interesting their concept. What is the different with others. What is new they are going to us. How we could benefited from their project except trading. If need get profit from trading than why we will by their token. How they are going to develop their concept. All the point we should check about their concept. Just match with concept, roadmap and whitepaper. If you find something wrong that means they are going to scam you. Or you will lose your money with them. Because most of ICO price drop after crowd-sale.
For example; I have a construction company and I need fund to expand it. I choose to raise fund by create an ICO, so how you are going to benefited from my project? So it's not a real concept for investors.


  • No Usage of Token:
When you are wishing to buy some ICO token than think how you will use it. Is there is any source to use their token? If not than I can't say it's a potential ICO. Use of token keep role to increase token value. If no purpose of use that token build for what? Only for trading on exchange ? It's really profitable for investors ? I don't think so, if no legit source of use for token means you will lose your fund. For example; if you can use a token for buy goods or services that means there is legit reason of use token. You might consider its a legit project.


  • Disharmonious Token Distribution:
Disharmonious Token Distribution means unfair distribution of token. Like 50% for public 25% for team it will lock for 2 years etc. However they just want to increase demand of their token, nothing else.  All raise fund with them so why team need reserve 25% and promising for lock. I don't think there is legit reason. Sure they will partially sale token after listed on exchange even they will not scam directly. One they will sale their token , price will automatically drop down.


  • Weak Community:
A strong community  is the key of success. Even for existing coin, always need strong community to support them. With out community a token is useless. Say, a token listed on exchange, but there is no community for trade it. So who will buy your token ? Community need before ICO and also after ICO. But maximum project never care about community after crowd-sale. You can check their media environment to guess how strong their community. Community real or fake. You need observe it. Also how is their social activity. Only way to build community is social media. So you can gusses what is going on.


  • Breaking Own Made Rules:
Every ICO have some promising rules, terms and condition. If they break their own made rules it's not a good sign for ICO. Rules breaking create a unexpected situation. Most of investor will disappointed due to breaking rules. For example; after raised some fund they start drama, like update whitepaper, roadmap, terms and condition, KYC etc. I had experienced some of ICO increased total supply. Really it is not a good practices.


  • No Repositories:
In most of ICO's you will see they mention open source repositories. Means they should have source for save all data include code that would accessible publicly. The most uses open source repositories is Github. It's especially for developers, they will save all the details there. But unfortunately you will not find the Github link on most of ICO. It's the clear sign of that they are not meet the minimum requirement to launch an ICO. No blockchain  developer on their team. They just higher some cheap developer to build website and deployed token.


  • No Technological Explanation:
An ICO should have technological explanation how projects are related with blockchain technology. Read the whitepaper, check how they present blockchain technology explanation there. Should be care about combination of projects and blockchain. How they are going to keep role to improve blockchain technology. If they just describe only about their project, and there is no appropriate discussion about blockchain technology, that means they never have enough knowledge about blockchain.
        

  • High Return Promises:
No doubts they are going to scam you if you see high return investment plan on their ICO. Did you think how they are going to pay you? It's called ponzi scheme. I think no need much explanation about high return. Just pay attention on Bitconnect (BCC).


  • No Real Dev's Profile link:
Take a look on team profile link especially LinkedIn before investing. Most of scammer never use any profile link. Some of them create fake profile. You can see newly created and not much connection there. Also scammer able to create all kind of social profile. So check profile history deeply.


  • Fake Partnership:
Most of ICO mention fake partnership. Sometime I can't stop laugh when I see some one use also google as a partner. Lol.. However its little difficult to verify partnership. But not impossible.  


  • Highlights Fake Database:
Most of ICO's highlight fake database. Like first day of launch got 10K participant. Do you believe it ? Some ICO will show 5/10 million raised in one day or 2 day. Don't believe them. I don't think its possible. Remember all the data editable from admin panel include progress bar. So don't trust blindly.


  • Bad Promotional Strategy:
Must look on promotional strategy before invest on ICO. Scammer will find easy and shortcut promotional way. Best example is Bitcointalk, always will try to use bumping service and spamming their link. You can see result on SEO rank also, how recognize SEO rank. Check visitor from website traffic checker , like Alexa. You will get some information how popular they are.


  • Greedy Offers:
Mostly scam ICO use greedy offers. Like pay for bumping ANN, pay for positive comment on social media, pay for voting on exchange, pay for positive rating on ICO listing site. Some of them will offer 200% to 500% bonus. Its not good sign and its make more suspicious.


  • No Reputation on social media/crypto forum:
If you see peoples shouting scam scam on social media of any ICO, stay away. There should reason why people shouting as a scam. Try to find what is wrong. Check the activity of team how they are active. Most of team hire social media managers. Try to contact with core team and ask your question. Scammer always will try to avoid much question. They will not give you appropriate answer.


  • Mixing Token Name With Existing Coin:
Especially I feel worry if I see connect with any token. Like Bitconnect, Ethconnect, Liteconnect, Neoconnect, EosGas, etc. Really terrible name for me. Scammer always choose a well reputed name to encourage peoples for invest their project. So they just mix a name with well reputed existing coin. So if you see something like this remember it , they are really not connected with any existing coin unless there is official ann from existing coin.      


  • No Clear Explanation use of raised fund:
It's important that raised fund how are going to use. How they are going to improve their project on future. They should have proper fund allocation and explanation. Really raised fund use only for team? So what about investor ? How they are going to bring their token/coin on top position? So look a time on their fund allocation.


  • Discrepant Hard Cap / Soft Cap:
Every project have promising hard cap and soft cap. Read details on whitepaper about hard cap and soft cap. If you see more than 30% soft cap target and more than 70% hard cap target its discrepant for me. I have no idea if any ICO return fund due to not reach on soft cap.  


  • Discrepant Total Supply:
Check the total supply. Some of ICO total supply very low, like 5M. They want attract peoples by demand. They try to show their token is low and their demand is high. Some ICO total supply more tan Billion, they offer you cheap price. For me both is discrepant total supply. More than 100M I will not consider this is a good ICO. Too much supply means dump after ICO.


  • Low Quality Smart Contract:
Although I am not a developer but I match smart contract with well known open source smart contract those are already establish on market. There is different smart contract writer. Even for 10$ you will able to deploy token (by hire). So there is not much good result you can expect. If you find wrong, that means core team not able to write smart contract.


  • Email Spamming:
Just say, you never register on ICO, but you are continue receiving spam mail from them. So what does it mean? I have experience, I still receiving this kind of mail. That means scammer bought mail list from other or they hacked other server or they already scammed you by other website. So avoid if you find this kind of behaviors.


  • Low Security:
Before register check their website how safe for you. They are using SSL or not, although its cheap but it will protect your personal information. Check also others security as much as possible.


However I just share what is on my mind and how I spot scam ICO. I can't give any guaranty who will scam. Someone asked me how I spot scam ICO, that's why thought create this topic.
Apologize for broken English. If you found anything wrong here or you want to add any option, let me know. I will glad to modify it.


  • Free Airdrop Trap:
This is the most common scam indication. Not only indication they will scam your MyEtherwallet. They announce greedy airdrop offer. Then they will ask something like KYC and eventually will ask for sign a massege from your MyEtherwallet. Unfortunately they will provide you a phishing link of MyEtherwallet. If you am here your password, means within few minutes your wallet will empty.  I have a post regarding this scam. I am the proof myself. But I never enter my private key before I check my address bar. So must be careful from this kind of scam. No doubt they will scam you. This is the trap of scam your wallet. Perhaos few ICO could repeat it.




Report a scam ICO effectively  
There is a Scam Report Format on pin post. I believe it was created to report scammer of forum members. Its not look like much appropriate for report a scam ICO. However I has created a format below, everyone free to use if want.

Accusations Formats of Scam ICO


Preview of Scam Report format for ICO:
Code:
[b]ICO Name:[/b]
[b]Scammer Website:[/b]
[b]Archived Website:[/b]
[b]ICO status:[/b] (Exit / Live / upcoming  )
[b]Bitcointalk Profile:[/b]
[b]ANN Tread:[/b]
[b]Archived ANN:[/b]
[b]Bounty Thread :[/b]
[b]Archived Bounty:[/b]
[b]Valid Reason of Accusation:[/b]


[b]Describe briefly about accusation with solid proof: [/b]



[b]Source links :[/b]


[b]Linkedln/profile Link of team with name:[/b]


[b]Domain Information[/b]:



Preview of Scam Report format for ICO
ICO Name:
Scammer Website:
Archived Website:
ICO status: (Exit / Live / upcoming  )
Bitcointalk Profile:
ANN Tread:
Archived ANN:
Bounty Thread :
Archived Bounty:
Valid Reason of Accusation:


Describe briefly about accusation with solid proof/image/screenshots :



Source links:





Linkedln/profile Link of team with name:

  
Domain Information:



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Coolcryptovator
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Scam exposer !!! Let's expose scam ICO together.


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September 04, 2018, 04:55:25 AM
 #2

If you found any kind of scam ICO please report it on Scam Accusation board by following above format. It will help us to save money.

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September 04, 2018, 07:46:43 AM
 #3

Are you asking to report about SCAM ICOs which satisfy all the parameters above (red flags) or just one of them?
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September 04, 2018, 08:47:16 AM
 #4

Great advice! I also investigated a few ICOs a few weeks ago. I arrive at basically the same conclusions, but I use actual examples of scam ICOs. 

http://www.coinisseur.com/biggest-ico-scams-and-lessons-learned/

And I'm still perplexed at the sheer number of scams present within ICOs. And the audacity of some of them. 
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September 04, 2018, 09:11:00 AM
 #5

All that mentioned is the indicators to detect Scam ICO but can only discover after a fake/hide/unknown developer team or copy/paste of site/whitepaper or the occurrence of a scam.
One of the most important indicators, in my opinion, is the amount of spending on promotion, campaigns/ICOs that pay from shit-tokens and reveal a little information is a scam one.
In general, do not invest in any ICO.

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September 04, 2018, 12:16:35 PM
 #6

Also, if there is a community manager that asks you to buy the coins from a link and not from the ICO company's website, that is most likely a scam.
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September 04, 2018, 10:56:17 PM
 #7

great instruction. but to say shorter, the main marker in scum ICO is team. if there is some hint that the team is fake - better to stay away

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September 04, 2018, 11:56:29 PM
 #8

Its really hard this days with icos, there are so many scammers out there. A friend showed me an ico that seems to be good, and a couple of weeks later they took all the money and left the coin, thats why I dont like to invest in icos, maybe when we have more tools to know when you are seeing a scam project, people is going to invest more in them.

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September 05, 2018, 07:58:39 AM
 #9

One of the ways to avoid scam ICO is to follow on the money. It means you purchase token only if some reputable fund, investor or project participates in ICO.

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September 05, 2018, 08:46:11 AM
 #10

This would help protect iinvestors and bounty hunters alike from scam projects.
And never simply follow the recommendations of others, be it a crypto influencer or enthusiast.
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September 05, 2018, 12:37:13 PM
 #11

Well done, we needed something like this posted here.  I think you are covering all the most important points on how to spot a scam.
More people read this post, more scams will be uncovered.
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September 09, 2018, 06:54:03 PM
 #12

It is good to suggest that many newbie are victims of scams, and now scams are becoming more and more embarrassing because they are not regulated, so it is very necessary for newbie to provide a way to avoid being cheated.

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September 12, 2018, 11:48:11 AM
 #13

I think you cover everything! Very impressive.

If anyone is interested, I go more into detail on how to spot an ICO scam here: http://www.coinisseur.com/what-to-look-for-in-an-ico/

I cover fewer points than the original post but provide more details regarding the most important things mentioned in it Wink I also looked into what academia has to say about ICOs. Not many sources yet, but some interesting points were made. 
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September 15, 2018, 08:42:22 AM
 #14

Thanks Coolcryptovator, i didn't concern about domain before while researching about ICO. It's obviously that ICO that has domain registration below 1 year is very very suspicious.

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September 15, 2018, 02:09:39 PM
 #15

I don't know if there other guidelines to spot scam ICO. I can't found appropriate topic. Anyway , everyone have own thought & and experience. I am going to share my thought and experience, How to spot a scam ICO .

As well everyone know what is ICO/crowd-sale. In short description, ICO or crowd-sale is the one of famous fund raising opportunity from people's.

I always care about some point before spot a scam ICO. I will describe below:



  • Domain Information:
Domain information is a important part to spot a scam ICO. A newly registered domain create many questions. If I found domain registration below one month, it's suspicious for me. I will consider it primary scam attempt. Because they just decide suddenly to launch an ICO for raise fund. It's not a good practice. If domain registered before 3 or 4 month, that means they have well planed from began.
However about domain registration, other point is owner identity. If there is no owner identity on domain information obviously there is risk involvement. That means they use a service to protect identity. Although most of ICO hide their identy, some of them are got success. It doesn't mean all ICO will be successful. So consider research about domain information before invest an ICO. You can use Whois website to find all information about domain.

  • Unprofessional Website Design:
A website design indicate about skill of developer team.  Very rare ICO's using unique design. They just simply buy a template and higher a cheap developer for modify template. Some time I surprised once I see a template sold more than 2K times, so how many template on the market ? And do you know how many coin listed on CMC ? Approx 1900+ only. So who bought too much template ? Answer is obvious scammer. I noticed some of ICO even never removed default logo from infographic chart. So , should I trust them ? Should I consider it a legit ICO? I don't think so. So always consider design professionalism before invest any ICO. If an ICO not have a experienced developer obviously their plane isn't fair.

  • Website Content Plagiarism/Stolen:
I don't know what about other's, but I found many ICO's plagiarized or copy paste from other. I consider it stolen content. Most of ICO doing that stigmatized work. It could be easily find if you are involved with ICO's. You can see almost ICO using similar content or same content to introduce themselves. If a team not able to write unique and something new about the project so how we can expect a good result from them ? Basically an legit ICO will never follow others. They should show their creativity on their project. It's not a story writing. Just copy content from any other successful ICO for encourage investors, obviously I will consider it a scam attempt.


  • Fake Developer/Core Team:
Fake team is the main problem now. It's spread like a virus. I called it fake viruses. Team & whitepaper is backbone of an ICO. If team if totally fake so what will happen ? Fake means stolen picture from other's, obviously a scammer team behind of every project. Using fake team it's clear proof of scam. I never compromised with fake team. If team aren't existing, how we expect a good result from any ICO? I don't think it's possible. If a team don't want to scam , so why they will hide their identity ? Stolen identity of their it's a good practice? Never, it couldn't  be fair. For me fake team is more dangerous from no team. Because is scammed by fake team claim will goes to others. If no team on the website that means investors aware about their absences. So it's depend on investors should be invest or not. If invest such as scam project, of course he deserve scam. Team can be identify easily. Just use by few online tools. I have a topic regarding how to find fake team. You can read it to know.
So please check team also carefully before invest on a ICO.


  • Plagiarism & Unprofessional Whitepaper:
As I mention above team and whitepaper is backbone of an ICO. So all the details about project should be reflect on the whitepaper. But most of ICO follow others whitepaper. It's not just guesses, I saw it practical. Direct copy paste from other whitepaper. But unfortunately they forgot to change token symbol in one point. So what does mean ? Obviously they copy paste from others. It's not very hard to find if you related with ICO. Because if you read all project's whitepaper than more easy to find plagiarism. Although there is some online tools to check plagiarism. It's very important subject to read whitepaper. Whitepaper will describe about their aim. Vision, roadmap, problem, solution, uses of token, block chain technology, Soft Cap, hard cap, token distribution, fund allocation etc every thing should be clear explanation on whitepaper. If they never explained briefly than it's indicate to scam. ICO means not just create a token and sold on market. There should be proper explanation about token & project.
So don't miss to read whitepaper before invest on ICO. Although personally I don't like to invest on ICO. But people's are doing that. However I never encourage you for invest on ICO personally. This topic just to spot scam ICO. So if you can spot any ICO that means you are safe huge fund.


  • Corrupted Roadmap:
May be you are thinking roadmap how could be corrupted. But it's really possible. Corrupted means meaningless roadmap. Some of roadmap you will find like a description with token distribution. Like development date, token deployment date, pre-sale date , ICO date etc. You don't think this is look like a corruption? I consider it's a corruption. Because no meaning of roadmap if there is no clear future plane. It's important how they are going to increase their token value. What is the future plan, it will on the roadmap. However check the roadmap it's actually worthy or not, or just copy paste from others.


  • Existing businesses:
It's also an important element of ICO. If any ICO project had a potential existing business that means there is a chance of success. Most of ICO hasn't any existing business and they try to raise found. Some are use fund for increase value of their token after ICO. But it's very rare, most of them are just skip with fund. As a result even token listed on exchange price will drop. So somehow you will get scam. Those project already had good platform for invest raised fund it's could consider pretty safe. But reality is no one can say who will skip with fund. It's depend on team mentality. We should check their background as much as possible.


  • No Real Concept:
What is concept ? Concept means a platform, which platform they are launching with ICO. For example, exchange , advertising , marketplace, gaming etc. If there is no clear concept obviously it's a scam indicator. Just create a website it doesn't mean they are legit or they are going to success. It's very important that how they are going to build their platform. It's look almost ICO using same concept. That's why scam are increasing on the market. We should look how interesting their concept. What is the different with others. What is new they are going to us. How we could benefited from their project except trading. If need get profit from trading than why we will by their token. How they are going to develop their concept. All the point we should check about their concept. Just match with concept, roadmap and whitepaper. If you find something wrong that means they are going to scam you. Or you will lose your money with them. Because most of ICO price drop after crowd-sale.
For example; I have a construction company and I need fund to expand it. I choose to raise fund by create an ICO, so how you are going to benefited from my project? So it's not a real concept for investors.


  • No Usage of Token:
When you are wishing to buy some ICO token than think how you will use it. Is there is any source to use their token? If not than I can't say it's a potential ICO. Use of token keep role to increase token value. If no purpose of use that token build for what? Only for trading on exchange ? It's really profitable for investors ? I don't think so, if no legit source of use for token means you will lose your fund. For example; if you can use a token for buy goods or services that means there is legit reason of use token. You might consider its a legit project.


  • Disharmonious Token Distribution:
Disharmonious Token Distribution means unfair distribution of token. Like 50% for public 25% for team it will lock for 2 years etc. However they just want to increase demand of their token, nothing else.  All raise fund with them so why team need reserve 25% and promising for lock. I don't think there is legit reason. Sure they will partially sale token after listed on exchange even they will not scam directly. One they will sale their token , price will automatically drop down.


  • Weak Community:
A strong community  is the key of success. Even for existing coin, always need strong community to support them. With out community a token is useless. Say, a token listed on exchange, but there is no community for trade it. So who will buy your token ? Community need before ICO and also after ICO. But maximum project never care about community after crowd-sale. You can check their media environment to guess how strong their community. Community real or fake. You need observe it. Also how is their social activity. Only way to build community is social media. So you can gusses what is going on.


  • Breaking Own Made Rules:
Every ICO have some promising rules, terms and condition. If they break their own made rules it's not a good sign for ICO. Rules breaking create a unexpected situation. Most of investor will disappointed due to breaking rules. For example; after raised some fund they start drama, like update whitepaper, roadmap, terms and condition, KYC etc. I had experienced some of ICO increased total supply. Really it is not a good practices.


  • No Repositories:
In most of ICO's you will see they mention open source repositories. Means they should have source for save all data include code that would accessible publicly. The most uses open source repositories is Github. It's especially for developers, they will save all the details there. But unfortunately you will not find the Github link on most of ICO. It's the clear sign of that they are not meet the minimum requirement to launch an ICO. No blockchain  developer on their team. They just higher some cheap developer to build website and deployed token.


  • No Technological Explanation:
An ICO should have technological explanation how projects are related with blockchain technology. Read the whitepaper, check how they present blockchain technology explanation there. Should be care about combination of projects and blockchain. How they are going to keep role to improve blockchain technology. If they just describe only about their project, and there is no appropriate discussion about blockchain technology, that means they never have enough knowledge about blockchain.
        

  • High Return Promises:
No doubts they are going to scam you if you see high return investment plan on their ICO. Did you think how they are going to pay you? It's called ponzi scheme. I think no need much explanation about high return. Just pay attention on Bitconnect (BCC).


  • No Real Dev's Profile link:
Take a look on team profile link especially LinkedIn before investing. Most of scammer never use any profile link. Some of them create fake profile. You can see newly created and not much connection there. Also scammer able to create all kind of social profile. So check profile history deeply.


  • Fake Partnership:
Most of ICO mention fake partnership. Sometime I can't stop laugh when I see some one use also google as a partner. Lol.. However its little difficult to verify partnership. But not impossible.  


  • Highlights Fake Database:
Most of ICO's highlight fake database. Like first day of launch got 10K participant. Do you believe it ? Some ICO will show 5/10 million raised in one day or 2 day. Don't believe them. I don't think its possible. Remember all the data editable from admin panel include progress bar. So don't trust blindly.


  • Bad Promotional Strategy:
Must look on promotional strategy before invest on ICO. Scammer will find easy and shortcut promotional way. Best example is Bitcointalk, always will try to use bumping service and spamming their link. You can see result on SEO rank also, how recognize SEO rank. Check visitor from website traffic checker , like Alexa. You will get some information how popular they are.


  • Greedy Offers:
Mostly scam ICO use greedy offers. Like pay for bumping ANN, pay for positive comment on social media, pay for voting on exchange, pay for positive rating on ICO listing site. Some of them will offer 200% to 500% bonus. Its not good sign and its make more suspicious.


  • No Reputation on social media/crypto forum:
If you see peoples shouting scam scam on social media of any ICO, stay away. There should reason why people shouting as a scam. Try to find what is wrong. Check the activity of team how they are active. Most of team hire social media managers. Try to contact with core team and ask your question. Scammer always will try to avoid much question. They will not give you appropriate answer.


  • Mixing Token Name With Existing Coin:
Especially I feel worry if I see connect with any token. Like Bitconnect, Ethconnect, Liteconnect, Neoconnect, EosGas, etc. Really terrible name for me. Scammer always choose a well reputed name to encourage peoples for invest their project. So they just mix a name with well reputed existing coin. So if you see something like this remember it , they are really not connected with any existing coin unless there is official ann from existing coin.      


  • No Clear Explanation use of raised fund:
It's important that raised fund how are going to use. How they are going to improve their project on future. They should have proper fund allocation and explanation. Really raised fund use only for team? So what about investor ? How they are going to bring their token/coin on top position? So look a time on their fund allocation.


  • Discrepant Hard Cap / Soft Cap:
Every project have promising hard cap and soft cap. Read details on whitepaper about hard cap and soft cap. If you see more than 30% soft cap target and more than 70% hard cap target its discrepant for me. I have no idea if any ICO return fund due to not reach on soft cap.  


  • Discrepant Total Supply:
Check the total supply. Some of ICO total supply very low, like 5M. They want attract peoples by demand. They try to show their token is low and their demand is high. Some ICO total supply more tan Billion, they offer you cheap price. For me both is discrepant total supply. More than 100M I will not consider this is a good ICO. Too much supply means dump after ICO.


  • Low Quality Smart Contract:
Although I am not a developer but I match smart contract with well known open source smart contract those are already establish on market. There is different smart contract writer. Even for 10$ you will able to deploy token (by hire). So there is not much good result you can expect. If you find wrong, that means core team not able to write smart contract.


  • Email Spamming:
Just say, you never register on ICO, but you are continue receiving spam mail from them. So what does it mean? I have experience, I still receiving this kind of mail. That means scammer bought mail list from other or they hacked other server or they already scammed you by other website. So avoid if you find this kind of behaviors.


  • Low Security:
Before register check their website how safe for you. They are using SSL or not, although its cheap but it will protect your personal information. Check also others security as much as possible.


However I just share what is on my mind and how I spot scam ICO. I can't give any guaranty who will scam. Someone asked me how I spot scam ICO, that's why thought create this topic.
Apologize for broken English. If you found anything wrong here or you want to add any option, let me know. I will glad to modify it.



Report a scam ICO effectively  
There is a Scam Report Format on pin post. I believe it was created to report scammer of forum members. Its not look like much appropriate for report a scam ICO. However I has created a format below, everyone free to use if want.

Accusations Formats of Scam ICO


Preview of Scam Report format for ICO:
Code:
[b]ICO Name:[/b]
[b]Scammer Website:[/b]
[b]Archived Website:[/b]
[b]ICO status:[/b] (Exit / Live / upcoming  )
[b]Bitcointalk Profile:[/b]
[b]ANN Tread:[/b]
[b]Archived ANN:[/b]
[b]Bounty Thread :[/b]
[b]Archived Bounty:[/b]
[b]Valid Reason of Accusation:[/b]


[b]Describe briefly about accusation with solid proof: [/b]



[b]Source links :[/b]


[b]Linkedln/profile Link of team with name:[/b]


[b]Domain Information[/b]:



Preview of Scam Report format for ICO
ICO Name:
Scammer Website:
Archived Website:
ICO status: (Exit / Live / upcoming  )
Bitcointalk Profile:
ANN Tread:
Archived ANN:
Bounty Thread :
Archived Bounty:
Valid Reason of Accusation:


Describe briefly about accusation with solid proof/image/screenshots :



Source links:





Linkedln/profile Link of team with name:

  
Domain Information:




This is great stuff!

We're working on a page for our developing website that will cover due diligence questions that an ICO investor or airdrop claimer might ask.

With your permission (and of course a linked citation), we'd like to incorporate some of your advice into our article.

The article itself will be under creative commons with no content gates.
Coolcryptovator
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September 16, 2018, 12:12:26 PM
 #16

 With your permission (and of course a linked citation), we'd like to incorporate some of your advice into our article.

The article itself will be under creative commons with no content gates

Permitted, you can use content from this post. This is for help people's so you are free to use it. On the others hand it will be much appriceated if someone translate it local board , if course you should add original reference link. So that every one will know the processor.

For your info, don't qoute whole thread for reply. It's not looking good.

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September 16, 2018, 12:37:11 PM
 #17

Sorry about the faux pas. Thanks for the heads up.
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September 16, 2018, 02:46:01 PM
Merited by Coolcryptovator (2)
 #18

You have a very nice guide going and I have one suggestion that you might want to add in your post. You should also add how their airdrops are ran as an indicator. Usually this scam ICOs also take advantage of people who are aiming to have their tokens for "free" but mostly they are being lured in their trap. Some of their trap consists of asking for their private keys, having some kind of donation in order to "verify that its their wallet", and even some kind of KYC requirement before they send the tokens but what really is happening is they are stealing from you.

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September 18, 2018, 08:34:34 PM
 #19

Snip

Thanks for remind it. Added on OP. I have experience about it. But unfortunately I forgot to add on OP.

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September 20, 2018, 09:07:10 AM
 #20

Up for newcomers

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