Bitcoin mining hackers have struck again in Thailand, duping victims of 42 million baht ($1.35 million approx.) by establishing a virtual crypto mining farm, reported the local daily Bangkok Post.
The Dwarf Scam
This scam, however, fails to dwarf the 797 million bahts ($24 million approx.) Bitcoin scam carried out by Thai actor, Jiratpisit “Boom” Jaravijit, and his siblings in 2018.
Around 30 victims have come forward to register their complaints with the police but law authorities signal that the total number of affected individuals may be around 140.
The online crypto mining firm, CryptoMining.Farm, had purportedly promised its potential investors an eye-catching 70% return on their investments.
The website seemed to offer virtual bitcoin mining contracts to willing investors.
A virtual mining contract allows the user to drawing shared mining power from a large data center, without the need for purchasing a mining setup and employing it to mine cryptocurrencies, thus saving running costs and profiting in such a scenario.
A Virtual Reality Check
Most virtual mining setups use this basis to lure investors into their scams and present highly inaccurate sale figures and profit records to potential clientele, hiding operational costs.
Victims of the scam were reportedly promised anytime money withdrawal from the scheme but such was not the case. One victim said:
“From August the owner began imposing conditions for withdrawing the money. Then at the start of this month, the site announced it would start paying back investors in 84 installments — which would take over seven years to complete.”
Recently, Wissanu Krea-ngam, the Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, had called for greater engagement on enhancing and tightening of crypto regulations in the country.
He said that the industry experts should raise their knowledge level so as to not lag behind cyber criminals.
The $24 million scam is perhaps the biggest reason why the country’s deputy Prime Minister has stated his desire for authorities to level up their efforts and regulations with regard to digital assets.
The country has been one of the frontrunners when it comes to blockchain and crypto adoption, with the Thai stock exchange (SET) awaiting approval from the country’s Finance Ministry to begin operations on its crypto exchange.
The higher the demand, the more is the likelihood of a scam or dubious scheme coming into light and Thailand’s regulators need to assert control on crypto ventures, matching the rapid adoption rate of the crypto industry in the country.