Pakistan: Investigation agency issues notice to Binance over multi-million dollar scam

Sahana Kiran
Source – Unsplash

One of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges, Binance encountered a lot of regulatory pressure in 2021. Looks like Pakistan wanted to prolong this trend into 2022 with a brand new notice against the crypto firm.

The crypto-verse has witnessed an array of scams and hacks over the years. While the scams started out low-key, the market value of the industry brought in perpetrators who carried out high-profile scams. More recently, a multi-million dollar scam took place in Pakistan. This incident, however, dragged in popular crypto platform Binance.

As per a recent report, Binance was issued a notice by Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency. While the regulator did not accuse the exchange of foul play, it fell under the purview of the investigation. The growth analyst at Binance Pakistan’s Hamza Khan was issued an order of attendance. The press release by the FIA Cyber Wing revealed, “to explain his position on the company’s linkage to “fraudulent online investment mobile applications.”

Binance Pakistan in trouble?

2021 was a rough year for Binance. Regulators from across the globe went ballistic on the crypto exchange. Several regulators even ousted the crypto exchange from their respective regions. Therefore, Binance had to migrate to the Cayman Islands and set up its headquarters there.

Many were reportedly a part of the investigation as the Pakistan government was trying to eliminate online investment frauds that were taking place in the region. Therefore, a “relevant questionnaire” was sent out to the Binance Headquarters in the Cayman Islands as well as Binance US.

Previously, the Pakistan government garnered several complaints across the country alleging that they had lost billions of rupees. The identified mobile apps were MCX, HFC, HTFOX, FXCOPY, OKIMINI, BB001, AVG86C, BX66, UG, TASKTOK, and 91fp. All these applications reportedly urged investors to register onto Binance and transfer money into the account of the aforementioned application.

After attaining the desired capital, perpetrators would crash the app. Gullible investors were even scammed through the “referral bonus process.”

Additionally, each of these apps reportedly entailed about 5,000 customers. The release read,

“At the same time, all members of the group were added in groups on Telegram, where expert betting signals, on the rise and fall of Bitcoin, were given by the anonymous owner of the application and admins of the Telegram groups.”

Furthermore, social media influencers from Pakistan, part of the marketing process of these apps would also have to face legal repercussions.