Technode was the singular source which claimed that the service launched 10 bitcoin ATMs around Hong Kong, beating the other provider Robocoin. It’s now more than obvious that the press releases sent by HKCEx to the media have been nothing but fake. Besides Technode, every single other bitcoin news website tried to get a hold of what was actually happening, but before they did, the damages were already substantial.
Besides the support the company received from Technode and also the insane return bonuses they were offering, a lot of people from the digital currency world began depositing funds on their HKCEx.net accounts, during the 4 days the service was operational, sort of speak. All of those people had their funds lost and unrecoverable. The site went down for hours, 4 days after the launch, with no official explanation as of why and when it was about to come back online.
Later on, HKCEx claimed that the reason the site was down was a DDoS attack. Still, after the site was back up, users were unable to withdraw their funds. Most cryptocurrency news websites never even published pieces on the portal because journalists could never verify the information in the press releases.
After the supposed DDoS attack, the company hired new people to be in charge of Technical Support. The site claimed that the huge amount of $25 million that was designated for bonuses should’ve been earned by people depositing money on the site first. This was one of the more reddish flagging signals that the site was a complete hoax, let alone the ATMs situation and the irrecuperable funds.
On May 20th, Technode published the last piece on HKCEx, saying that the site has collapsed and the team behind it fled the country. The domain has become vacant that same week, leaving many investors wondering if they would ever be able to withdraw their funds from the platform. The founding team of the site disappeared.
The price for one bitcoin on HKCEx was always $100 to $200 higher compared to other popular exchanges. Also, according to a person from inside the industry, the daily trading volume of the site was at about 500 bitcoins. The price of the bitcoin was the key factor which attracted a lot of investors in the first place, who wanted to move money around and earn a profit from it.
HKCEx said they raised $2 million in seed funding in 2013 and then also claimed to have raised $25 in the first 6 months of the platform being online. Also, the statement about the opening of 10 bitcoin ATM machines in Hong Kong has never been proven as valid. This funding news were yet another piece of the puzzle to make investors believe in the trading platform and therefore trick them into investing their money on it. The ATMs, for example, were never seen in person in Hong Kong.
The certain thing is, those investors will probably never see their money again and the entire HKCEx scheme will most likely remain a mystery forever.