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The Creator of ‘Evolved Apes’ Vanishes with $2.7 Million

The creator of the Evolved Apes NFTs, Evil Ape, appears to have stolen $2.7 million in ETH from investors. The person’s Twitter account and website have both been taken down.

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The author of the popular Evolved Apes NFT series appears to have made off with $2.7 million in investor funds. The creator’s pseudonym, “Evil Ape,” is no longer active on social media, and the website has also been taken down.

The Evolved Apes series is about a group of 10,000 NFTs who have been “locked inside a lawless region,” where only the strongest apes would survive in the survival of the fittest situation. The game was supposed to be a fighting game, but it hasn’t happened yet.

The 798 Ether that went missing was supposed to go toward project development and marketing. But, unfortunately, the monies have now become increasingly probable to have been stolen.

The scam impacted many people in the Evolved Ape community, from users to NFT producers. Unfortunately, the project’s artist had not been paid, and this was just one of several warning lights pointing to an impending rug pull.

One investor, speaking to Motherboard, was candid about Evil Ape’s depravity.

“What has happened is that Evil Ape has washed his hands of the project, removing the wallet containing all of the ETH from minting that was to be utilized for everything, including paying the artist, cash giveaways, marketing, rarity tools, game development, and everything else in between.”

However, there is a glimmer of hope. The NFT holders will revive the series in the shape of Fight Back Apes. They can carry on the tradition of the NFTs as holders and possibly recoup some of their lost money. This new series will use a multi-sig wallet to ensure that Evil Ape does not access the funds.

Scams still exist in the NFT business

While NFTs have proven to be highly profitable for many, they have also raised concerns. This includes security concerns, as well as accusations that the niche is being used to launder money. As a result, many in the industry are considering how to make the NFT sector more secure, and occurrences like this will fuel the fire.

Individuals putting up artists’ works without their consent is one-way NFTs might be harmed. A bogus Banksy artwork, for example, sold for $336,000 barely a week after the actual Banksy website was hacked.

NFTs are now well and fully entrenched in the mainstream, with celebrities and businesses promoting themselves through the medium. With such a high level of public participation, it will be critical to enact stronger investor protection laws.

Projects

Is Walmart Getting Ready to Make a Move into the Metaverse?

The retail behemoth filed seven patents, indicating that it intends to develop its own digital money and NFT collection.

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#nft #nfthours #walmart

With patent filings showing that it aims to build its cryptocurrency and NFT collection, it looks that retail behemoth Walmart Inc. is getting ready to enter the Metaverse.

On December 30, the multinational retailer registered many new trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Still, they went unreported until a CNBC article on January 16 shed additional light on Walmart’s plans.

At the time, Walmart had filed seven patent applications, three of which were under its current advertising subsidiary “Walmart Connect.”

Plans to develop and sell “virtual items,” such as electronics, toys, appliances, clothes, and home decor, were included in the applications. There’s also talk of “digital money” and a “digital token” and buying and selling NFTs.

In the meantime, a separate application reveals plans to trademark the Walmart brand name and logo in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), with the possibility of launching “physical fitness training services” in VR and AR.

This is the most recent in a series of incidents suggesting Walmart’s interest in the Metaverse. In August, the retail behemoth posted a job opening for a “digital currency and crypto product lead” to spearhead its digital currency strategy.

Although the job posting has since been taken down, it is unknown whether the position has been filled. A search on Linkedin for someone in the role at Walmart yields no results.

Walmart has teamed with Coinstar, a crypto ATM firm, and Coinme, a crypto-cash exchange, to deploy 200 Bitcoin ATMs in its shops across the United States in October.

Walmart has also been using blockchain technology since 2018 for supply chain management, customer markets, and intelligent products.

According to Morgan Stanley analysts, the Metaverse might provide retailers with an $8 trillion potential.

According to Digital Commerce 360, Walmart’s sales reached $11.1 billion in the third quarter of 2021. With a market valuation of over $406 billion, Walmart is the largest private employer in the United States. In addition, it owns a hypermarket, discount department store, and grocery store chain.

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Projects

Cuban Discusses his ‘Non-Shark’ Cryptocurrency and NFT Interests

Mark Cuban, the billionaire shark investor, acknowledged in a recent podcast that virtual assets account for 80 percent of his non-Shark money. Cuban has been very public about his admiration for cryptos since the beginning, so this statement comes as no surprise.

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#nft #nfthours #cuban #crypto

“80% of the investments that I make that are not on Shark Tank, are in or around cryptocurrencies.”

He went on to say,

“The investments I’m making now are not in traditional businesses.”

The television personality’s NBA team, the Dallas Mavericks, struck a deal with cryptocurrency platform Voyager last year. His brand also accepts Dogecoin for payment due to his numerous other crypto agreements. He also stated in this context,

“Put aside all the speculation you read about with Bitcoin and Dogecoin, all that. Set that aside, that’s just the gamesmanship that’s played with stocks and everything.”

However, he recently indicated in a podcast that he is now considering decentralized autonomous groups (DAOs).

“Every token holder in that application has a chance to set the direction of the network, not always equally, but typically equally. That is really where I look to invest.”

Cuban has previously predicted that DAOs could lead to “disruptive” business prospects.

Cuban is also optimistic about smart contracts, the lifeblood of DAOs, DeFi, and NFTs. Meanwhile, his NFT wallet appears to be filled with Ethereum, Polygon, and Solana items.

It’s worth mentioning that the serial investor recently participated in a capital round for Seattle-based fintech Seashell. An investment firm that aims to provide high yields through crypto-backed loans. Aside from that, Cuban has previously stated that his BTC, ETH, and alt portfolios are split 60 percent, 30 percent, and 10%, respectively.

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Projects

The Rug Has Been Ripped Out from under Frosties NFT Investors, who have Lost Almost $1 Million

Frosties NFT investors were enticed to the enterprise by false promises of prizes and gifts.

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#nft #nfthours #frosties #scam

On January 9th, investors in an NFT collection named Frosties were duped out of almost $1 million as the inventors of the digital tokens disappeared with their money.

Frosties NFT investors lost $1.3 million

According to published information, the collection had 8,888 NFTs, and the floor price was 0.04 ETH, which is nearly $120.

All of the NFTs were sold within an hour. Still, instead of receiving their coveted asset, investors discovered that the project developers had turned off all communication routes with the community.

According to Etherscan, the developers had shifted most of their funds out of the wallet associated with their OpenSea account and into another wallet.

The Frosties NFT project was thought to have significant intentions for its backers, promising “staking, metaverse [and] breeding functions.”

Aside from that, the idea offered “giveaways, airdrops, early access to the metaverse game, and unique mint passes to the following seasons” to those who invested.

Marcellus King, a first-time investor in the space, said he put $3000 into the fraud. He said he was initially wary of the project. Still, He was persuaded after seeing that it “had a flourishing community with a lot of activity, a roadmap, legitimate-looking site, OpenSea account, and artwork.”

Unfortunately, this was all a gimmick to get others to invest in the project.

Investors are trying to figure out how to get their money back

The project’s original developers may have vanished with the investors’ money, but it looks that they are not giving up on the idea.

The NFT’s original owners have started a Discord group chat where they’re now talking about “unrugging the Frosties.”

The organization is now working on a wrapped contract that would aid in the restitution of stolen funds to their proper owners.

One of the group’s approximately 1400 moderators revealed that they are “diligently working behind the scenes to gain control of the project in some way.”

NFT scams in recent times

While this may be the first documented NFT scam of the year, we reported on a number of them last year.

One of the scams we discovered involved “Iconics,” a Solana-based NFT project that cheated investors out of over $130,000 and instead sent them a random assortment of emojis.

Nervos Networks and Pastel have formed a new cooperation to fight concerns such as “rug pulls, NFT disappearances, data losses, and manipulation.”

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