The central bank specifically warns the public about initial coin offering (ICO) scams and crypto-based Ponzi schemes, which purport to offer a quick and significant return on investment for early adopters. These sorts of scams have reportedly been active in Rwanda, through firms like Supermarketings Global Ltd, 3 Friends System (3FS) Group Ltd, OneCoin, and Kwakoo (OnyxCoin).
The National Bank of Rwanda cautions investors to vet their potential projects, and reminds the public that it does not offer any recompense for scam victims.
According to a report by Cointelegraph, a study in 2018 concluded that over 80% of ICOs during the previous year were scams; however, only 11% of total funds invested in ICOs during 2017 were lost due to fraudulent activity.
On May 28, Russian police reportedly made an international arrest of the alleged creator of a Kazakhstan-based crypto pyramid scheme, which cost at least one investor approximately 14 million Kazakhstan tenge ($36,700). The suspect was declared wanted by Interpol after leaving Kazakhstan in early 2019.
May of 2019 has additionally seen two other large-scale allegations and investigations around crypto scams across the globe, in the United States and Brazil.