ISLAMABAD: Hopes of those Pakistanis who had lost their hard-earned money to the online Rs18 billion cryptocurrency fraud have risen as global crypto exchange Binance has assured the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) of full cooperation in its investigators into the scam.
In a statement, FIA cybercrime wing Additional Director Imran Riaz Tuesday confirmed that Binance had made telephonic contact with the FIA and officially sent an e-mail, assuring them of their cooperation in the investigation related to the fraud.
The international crypto exchange has appointed two of its officials for cooperation into the probe, he added. Without giving names, Imran Riaz said that the two officials of Binance were former employees of the US finance department and had been investigating financial crimes.
Billions of rupees were transferred from Pakistan to China through 11 mobile applications, revealed Imran Riaz.
Pakistanis lose billion to online cryptocurrency fraud
The FIA had detected an online fraud of USD100 million (Rs17.7 billion) using a cryptocurrency and issued a notice to the local representative of Binance to appear in person on Jan 10, local media had reported on January 8.
Sharing details of the fraud, FIA’s Additional Director Imran Riaz had said that those involved in the online fraud transferred the money abroad via cryptocurrency.
“We launched a probe after receiving complaints regarding a fraud involving billions of rupees being committed using nine online applications,” he had said and added that they had sought answers in this regard from a representative of the cryptocurrency in Pakistan.
He had shared that people invested between US$100 to US$80,000 in fraud applications. “Those who developed these apps were linked to cryptocurrency,” the FIA official had said.
He had said that they have sought details of all those linked to the fraud with the Binance cryptocurrency and their crypto accounts would be suspended. The FIA official had further shared that cryptocurrency is being used in money laundering and terror financing.
According to details some mobile applications were offering Pakistanis to invest in the virtual currency. These applications were linked to Binance, the leading virtual platform for buying and selling Bitcoins and other similar cryptocurrencies.
However, these applications suddenly vanished and investment of around Rs17.7 billion made by Pakistanis were lost. The authorities said the unique way was adopted for fraudulent activity. The persons who launched the applications had connections with the crypto exchange.