February 24, 2024

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How big a threat are cryptocurrencies for a well-run financial system?

The question resonates louder as scams involving cryptos are quietly on the rise in India through the last few months.

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Over the weekend, such an incident unfolded in Kerala where Highrich Online Shoppe Pvt Limited, a little-known company founded by a couple, KD Prathapan and Sreena Prathapan, illegally placed about Rs 1,138 crore raised from public in a cryptocurrency HRCC launched on its own.  According to local reports citing investigators, the company launched 10 crypto coins in 2022 that are valued differently by different exchanges.

According to Coinbase, one HRCC is valued at Rs 147, while Coingecko shows the value at Rs 149. It’s not clear how many investors have put money in cryptocurrency. The Prathapan duo is allegedly on the run for defrauding investors and an investigation is underway.

In another instance, local cops in Odisha busted a crypto racket that conducted frauds worth $1.6 million. As per local police, the accused operated from Cambodia and amassed Rs 15 crore through fake mobile applications. The scam surfaced when a complaint of fraud was lodged with the Rourkela cyber police station on December 30, claiming that he was swindled of Rs 65 lakh. Police…

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