New Zealand Issues Warning About Three Cryptocurrency-Related Scams

  • New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority has added three “suspected scams” to their Warnings & Alerts list.
  • Cryptogain, Russ Horn, and Zend Trade are the companies in question that the government wants citizens to stay away from.

Earlier today, New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority (FMA) added three new companies to its list of “suspected scams.” The three companies are Zend Trade, Cryptogain, and Russ Horn (also known as Forex Equinox). These three companies have been added to the New Zealand FMA’s “Warnings & Alerts” list. This list is an ongoing effort by the New Zealand government to help investors avoid putting their money into the hands of questionable people.

The three companies were labeled as “Suspected Scams,” which means: “We think the operations of the business/person bear the hallmarks of a scam. We strongly recommend that you do not deal with them.” The full list of warnings & alerts can be found here.

CryptoGain appears to be a scam similar to BitConnect, promising daily returns for their investors. On their website, CryptoGainLimited.com, they offer up to 2.6% daily returns for people who invest in their company. Additionally, they offer cloud mining packages (with 30% weekly returns) and a retirement plan (giving “30% profit after retirement”). Such sky-high returns will set off alarms for many investors, as well as their cloud mining offering, which is currently considered an unregistered security in the United States.

In addition, the FMA has identified that CryptoGain is possibly posing as a fake company. There is a company filed as CryptoGainLimited, but it is not related to the company described above. Therefore, the FMA believes this is likely not legitimate.

The other companies - Russ Horn, Forex Equinox, and Zend Trade - are all suspected to be organized under Russ Horn’s leadership. RussHorn.com and ForexEquinox are not scams in the sense that they will take your money - they seem to simply be exaggerated marketing pitches for Russ’ forex trading system.

His website offers a “free plus shipping” book. Although not a scam in the sense of failed project BitConnect, Russ Horn’s website does include some outlandish claims, including “How To Legally Cheat The Forex Markets And Literally Line Your Pockets With Cash.”

ForexEquinox.com claims that his system can “double your money every 30 days.”

Ongoing Suspicions

Zend Trade has been suspected of being a scam after it was found that Zend is not returning clients funds. Unlike ForexEquinox, which teaches people how to trade, ZendTrade offers “Managed Account Services.” This service means that ZendTrade will hold clients' money and trade for them, which could put them under regulatory scrutiny, since this service sounds much more like a hedge fund. FMA claims that this company is connected to Russ Horn.

Hacker Attempts to Sell Data Allegedly Stolen From Ledger, Trezor, and KeepKey

Michael LaVere
  • Online data monitoring service Under the Breach says a hacker is attempting to sell databases belonging to Ledger and Trezor.
  • The hacker allegedly used a Shopify exploit to obtain client information, while the company claims to have found "no evidence" of a breach in security.

Online data monitoring and prevention service Under the Breach says a hacker is attempting to sell client information belonging to cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturers Trezor, KeepKey, and Ledger. 

According to a tweet published May 24, Under the Breach said an the alleged hacker of the Ethereum.org forum was attempting to sell databases belonging to Trezor, KeepKey and Ledger. The stolen data was reportedly obtained via an exploit involving the e-commerce platform Shopify, with the tweet implying more leaks could have occurred that have gone unnoticed. 

The hacker also claimed to have the full SQL database belonging to the online crypto and fintech investment bank, BnkToTheFuture. 

In a subsequent tweet, the data monitoring service claims to have warned BnkToTheFuture about the leaked information.

The documents posted by Under the Breach reveal the hacker allegedly has information belonging to three large databases encompassing 80,000 clients.  

Ledger responded to the proposed Shopify data breach the same day, calling the hack a “rumor.” The crypto wallet manufacturer claimed to have analyzed screenshots from the leaked database and found it did not match their records. 

A Shopify representative told News.Bitcoin that the company had investigated the security breach and found “no evidence” of any compromise. 

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com