Amit Kumar, 40, received an sms giving him an investment tip about a scheme promising to pay a 10 per cent return every month. At a time when fixed deposits are offering 6-7 per cent annually, the message caught his attention.
The scheme involved investing in a crypto currency called ATC Coin for 18 months. For a minimum investment of ₹5,000, it promised to pay 81 ATC COIN (at the rate of ₹61). The total return for 18 months comes to 162 per cent (18X9, 1 per cent is the commission for running the scheme). The message further said that if the price of ATC Coin goes up like Bitcoin, which is currently trading at ₹4.79 lakh, one can earn crores of rupees, with a downside of just ₹5,000. “I got immediately interested with the kind of return promised. Moreover, I wanted to invest in virtual currencies given the surge in their popularity,” says Kumar.
He called up on the number and was told that there are multiple streams s of income that one can create through this scheme. “You just need to add members to your network. Every time the downline grows, you will get commission on the business they bring in. The more the level of members, the higher the income,” he was told. The similarity with other multi-level marketing, or MLM, schemes was striking.
Such schemes have suddenly gained prominence due to the ex- returns