Binance Pakistan came under the radar of the nation’s Federal Investigation Agency [FIA] who on Friday revealed that it has issued ‘an order of attendance’ to a leading cryptocurrency exchange as it detects a $100 million online fraud linked to the investment made in various mobile applications. Further, the agency in their press release said that the investigation was undertaken owing to the rise of several online investments frauds under the guise of Ponzi schemes, in which investors are promised high returns on their investments in lieu of onboarding more clients.
According to the P.A from an FIA Cyber Wing [Sindh], a notice was sent to Hamza Khan, an analyst at Binance Pakistan, to clarify his position on the firm’s connection to “fraudulent online investment mobile applications.” In addition to that, “a relevant questionnaire has also been sent to the Binance Headquarters in the Cayman Islands and Binance US to explain the same,” it said.
Binance Pakistan now at FIA crosshairs?
On December 20, 2021, the FIA received several complaints from users across the country, who had lost billions of rupees while operating from certain mobile apps. These were identified as MCX, HFC, HTFOX, FXCOPY, OKIMINI, BB001, AVG86C, BX66, UG, TASKTOK, and 91fp. The FIA said that these online applications lured people to register at Binance Crypto Exchange [Binance Holdings Limited], and then transfer the money from the Binance Wallet to the account of that particular application. Drilling deeper the release noted,
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,” the release stated. These apps crashed once a considerable capital base was established, robbing people of millions of dollars through the “referral bonus process”.
Meanwhile, Telegram authorities have been contacted by the agency to provide the location of the admins of fraudulent apps. Social media influencers promoting these apps were also being served with legal notices to explain their “point of contact with the apps,” the release added.
The latest news comes close on the heels of tax authorities raiding the offices of several leading crypto exchanges in neighboring India, starting with Binance-owned WazirX on the charge of alleged tax evasion.