Squid Game turned out to be a scam after all. I’m not talking about the hit Netflix show that hooked the world for weeks. I am referring to the eponymous cryptocurrency inspired by the series. Cryptocurrency Squid collapsed on Monday, but merchants who capitalized on the popularity of the show managed to make around $ 3.38 million (around Rs 25.3 crore). After hitting a peak value of $ 2,861, according to CoinMarketCap, the currency fell to just $ 0 and investors lost all of their money.
Launched last week amid huge suspicion, the Squid Game cryptocurrency was just a front for a very common theft practice in the crypto world. This is called a “carpet pull”. This is when the creators of the cryptocurrency cash in the coins for real money, perhaps when prices hit an all-time high – which was over 310,000% in the case of the Squid cryptocurrency – leaving almost no liquidity in exchange for any other trade. Investors therefore cannot sell their coins.
The Squid Game cryptocurrency went on sale on October 20, allowing investors to purchase a paid token for an online game, inspired by the Korean show. The inspiration behind cryptocurrency was very simple. Just as several indebted people play make-or-die versions of children’s games to make money on the Netflix series, investors believed that a similarly planned crypto would allow them to earn more Squid tokens.
The most obvious way to find out that the Squid Game cryptocurrency was a scam was through its website – SquidGame.cash. The three-week-old website, which is now gone, had grammatical errors and several strange spellings. These two should have been the red flags for investors who are now being left behind after the swoop. Crypto’s social media accounts were also suddenly gone. There was also a Telegram channel for people involved in the squid business, but it didn’t allow comments from anyone other than creators – another red flag.
But the biggest red flag was when investors started having trouble selling their Squid tokens on the platform. With the cryptocurrency’s value surging over the past week – which can be mainly attributed to the exceptional coverage in mainstream media, doubts that the token could be part of a scam have started to deepen. But before they could do anything, the creators pulled the currency out of the market, draining all of its liquidity. CoinMarketCap even cautioned investors against investing their money in the currency, telling them to “exercise due diligence and exercise caution when trading.”
Just because crypto is all the rage right now doesn’t mean that you are recklessly – and almost mindlessly – investing in a scam that is simply trying to leverage an element of pop culture to gain attention. Before Squid Game, hawkers tried to siphon money from people in the crypto named Mando, which was inspired by the Disney + Mandalorian show. Disney was quick to spot it and warn people about it. It’s hard to tell a legitimate cryptocurrency from a fake, but investors need to be more careful.