Regulators are becoming increasingly concerned about the proliferation of “click a button” Ponzi schemes.   

The Philippine SEC has issued the first regulatory fraud warning specifically pertaining to the scams.   

The Philippine SEC warns that “click a button” app Ponzis are “recharging and tasking scams,” offering purported online jobs through their e-commerce platforms, such as grabbing orders as the identified task. Then they will discuss or introduce to investors how they can invest in the said platform by first registering/enrolling on their platforms. Investors can then select from a variety of packages, levels, or VIP Levels ranging from Php100.00 to Php50,000.00 and simply “Recharge” or pay, deposit, or remit money. These individuals or groups of people use or imitate the e-commerce platforms of well-known online players such as Amazon, Shopee, Lazada, eBay, and others, and they pretend to be affiliated with these entities by presenting I.D.s and DTI Certificates of Authorization. This type of scam will only last a month. Following that, the websites or links used by perpetrators for operations will no longer be accessible. Then, these individuals or groups of people will rename their businesses and websites.   

This is consistent with what we have discovered.   

Every “click a button” app Ponzi I’ve come across so far is run by Chinese con artists.   

We can confirm that 365Ball and EFG Football are specific “click a button” app Ponzis targeting the Philippines.   

Unlike the e-commerce variant described by the SEC, these two employ the sports betting Ponzi scheme.   

Recharging and tasking scams involve the offering and sale of securities in the form of “investment contracts,” as defined in Section 3.1 of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Securities Regulation Code.   

As a result, the Securities Regulation Code (SRC) requires that the offer and sale of securities be duly registered with the Commission and that the concerned entity and/or its agents have the necessary registration and/or license to sell such securities to the general public.   

Furthermore, recharging and tasking schemes suggest a possible “Ponzi Scheme” in which funds from new investors are used to pay “fake profits” to prior investors. It is primarily intended to benefit its top recruiters and previous risk-takers while being detrimental to subsequent members in the event of a scarcity of new investors. 

In the Philippines, promoters of “click a button” app Ponzi schemes face a 5 million PHP fine or a 21-year prison sentence.

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