The undeniable fact is that one of the biggest challenges for the crypto community has been dealing with scams.
This is not new or any different from any other industry, yet the speed of information dissemination means that it is really easy for an entire industry to garner a bad reputation, quickly.
Recently, the lack of communication has concerned many, fearing that one more name might soon be added to the list of dead coins, Modern Finance Chain. (MFX),
For the uninitiated, the project looks to reward both businesses and customers for using its payment solution for their transactions. Although things are far from certain, one undeniable thing is that the token is not doing itself any favors by staying quiet, leading to speculation of failure or worse, a scam.
To add to the mystery, the token has already shut down their Telegram community, in its stead using an announcement-only channel which has all but one post. Medium seems to be in a similar rut, with the last update in October 2018.
While the coin is still trading, it is doing so at $.0004; about 1% of its initial value. To make matters worse, there has been hardly any trading since the turn of the new year.
Miscommunication or lies?
The MFX team had noted that over 2500 ETH had been raised by them, this roughly equates to over $1.25 million. Yet the soft cap was listed as 4,500ETH.
One would naturally assume that in this case, the investors would be refunded their token as the minimum threshold was not met. However, contrary to that belief, a notification on their Telegram channel read about the future plans of the project. The message noted:
“As previously announced, we successfully closed our token sale raising 2700 ETH and meeting our soft cap goal. With 2018 being the year of the bear, we consider this a success and are excited to continue with our development.”
This is at odds with the information on the earlier FAQ page that was on their website. During the pre-ICO, it was planned to keep the money locked up in the smart contract:
“In the unlikely event, MF Chain does not achieve its soft cap, ETH sent to the smart contract will remain locked until users request a refund transaction.”
Speculation has given way to suspicion as members worry that the money might have been squandered and thus the project is now shelved.
The plans laid down by the MFX roadmap had stated that the first quarter of 2019 should see the Chains mainnet and masternodes implemented. As one can guess that has not happened, in fact, there has been little done in terms of any development. And this gets magnified in the absence of any communication and made many wonder if it is all a lie.
A scam in the making?
The lack of information has forced bewildered MFX investors and supporters to vent their anger on public forums.
A common thread being the feeling of confusion and betrayal, understandable in the wake of little information for the past 3 months. It should be noted that poor communication is an industry-wide problem, especially once the firm has raised its money and looks to focus more on product development. Yet this sort of unresponsiveness is almost unheard of.
Another aspect that only adds fuel is that Modern Finance Chains partner, Credits [a Singapore-based blockchain platform for DApps while not officially canceling their partnership, have indicated that the project is all but dead due to no communication from the former.
This apparent silence of the company bodes ill and bears all the warnings of an exit scam.
In an attempt to investigate this further, when one checks the websites registration information, it only shows that mfchain.com domain was registered in November 2016 by Cloudflare — a domain name registrar who allows its customers to maintain whois privacy. This means any attempt to find out who actually owns the domain is going to hit a stone wall.
While the domain has been renewed till next year and the website has been renovated, it inspires little confidence. The website looks like a patchwork of templates, with most of the links not even working. The registration page seems to be disabled but, perhaps most damningly, any information about the team has been expunged.
Two names associated with the project, Craig Neil and Jayson Rellis — both seem to be genuine with an extensive repertoire in handling operations of startups. Yet no response for a KYC was forthcoming. And neither seem to be particularly active since the end of last year. Multiple attempts by investors and others have been in vain.
While Neil has been inactive on twitter since the time Modern Finance Chain began closing down communication, Rellis did respond to a query via LinkedIn. In his response he stated that work was still progressing, albeit slowly, owing to the drastic decrease in ETH value.
Yet, for all intents and purposes, there has been no development work to show for a while now. In the meantime, there has been no official word, it thus remains unclear if the project has been shelved or will move forward.
The prognosis at this stage seems unappetizing as the silence may be construed as a little more than hard times and more as a preparation for an exit. One hopes it's the former, however, a realistic approach may indicate it could well be the latter.