Nigerian SEC Associates Shady MLM Schemes Like Onecoin With Bitcoin

This past week the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Nigeria has warned its residents about virtual currency investments. The agency’s warning has bundled bitcoin investment with two Multi-Level-Marketing (MLM) operations well known for deceptive activities.

Also read: Buyer Beware! The Definitive OneCoin Ponzi Exposé

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria Conflates Bitcoin Investment with MLM Schemes

SEC-NG-LOGO_blue-backgroundOn January 12, the Nigeria’s SEC issued a statement cautioning citizens from investing in digital tokens such as Bitcoin, Onecoin, and Swisscoin. SEC details the public should be aware that these investments are “risky by nature” and some of them are “fraudulent pyramid schemes.” The Nigerian authorities state in the public notice:

The public is hereby advised to exercise extreme caution with regard to digital (cryptocurrencies) as a vehicle of investments.

The news comes after the well known Ponzi MMM Nigeria has become increasingly popular in the country. MLM and pyramid-like schemes have been catching the eyes of the country’s financial authorities as law enforcement agencies worldwide begin to investigate these operations.

Sadly the authorities have placed bitcoin alongside two shady businesses, Onecoin and Swisscoin, which both practice MLM techniques. Bitcoin is not a pyramid scheme, Ponzi, and proponents are not recruiting people for rewards. Unlike Swisscoin and Onecoin the cryptocurrency is studied by academic leaders, used by citizens voluntarily, and is a real peer-to-peer decentralized network.


Onecoin-logoBoth of these organizations use MLM methods of recruiting and promised returns after investing. has done extensive reporting on Onecoin as a known scam and most likely the token isn’t even a cryptocurrency at all. The token doesn’t seem to have a legitimate blockchain, and the so-called digital currency is not listed on market capitalization browsers like or

Onecoin is also being investigated by law enforcement in many countries worldwide. Many bitcoin proponents have firmly established that bitcoin has nothing to do with this MLM operation. In fact, some well-known bitcoiners have publicly stated that Onecoin is a scam and should be recognized as such. Furthermore, the hosts from Bitcoin Uncensored recently crashed a Onecoin meeting in Florida revealing it is not so easy to cash out Onecoins. In fact, it may not be even possible at all.


26-1467312536-how-to-capitalize-on-swisscoinSwisscoin is so-called ‘cryptocurrency’ that utilizes MLM recruiting as well. Swisscoin affiliates swear their digital token will one day outperform bitcoin much like Onecoin’s claim to be the “bitcoin killer.” On various social media outlets, you can see Swisscoin members spamming threads with “opportunities” to invest. The operation deploys services called “training packs” which consist of investment packages such as a trainee, a trader, or crypto-director. One publication details their opinion of Swisscoin’s MLM schemes stating:

Unfortunately, Swisscoin is another case of an MLM company attempting to capitalize on the allure of cryptocurrency, though the company actually has nothing to do with digital currency at all.  Essentially, affiliates are investing in a fake currency that does not exist outside of the Swisscoin ecosystem, and worse, the value of this fake currency is an arbitrary number set by the company.  Swisscoins are not traded on any crypto exchanges, and cannot be used to purchase anything outside of the Swisscoin website.

Bitcoin Should Not Be Associated With These MLM Operations

Bitcoin is a legitimate cryptocurrency, and many proponents will never tell you that you must invest in the digital asset. A vast majority will tell you if you are looking to invest in bitcoin only put in what you can afford to lose. The bitcoin community has no problem explaining that the nascent cryptocurrency can be volatile and risky. Bitcoin is an experiment and, unlike Onecoin and Swisscoin, there is no central organization behind the network.

Onecoin and Swisscoin are basically a new breed of parasites trying to use the the great attributes of bitcoin as their cover. They are polar opposites of true cryptocurrency protocols and should not be associated with bitcoin. However, these “fake crypto” MLM operations continue to pretend to be cryptocurrencies. Unfortunately, some law enforcement authorities and a few country’s financial agencies have blended these two pyramid schemes with a legitimate cryptocurrency.

What do you think about the Nigerian SEC associating bitcoin with these two MLM operations? Let us know in the comments below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Pixabay. 

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  • Ramon B Ben

    Never take cognisance of what Nigerian authorities or leaders write or say, they are just some sort of dumb and illiterate set of individuals who know nothing but prey on their citizens rather than better their lot.Imagine them condeming MMM Nigeria as a ponzi. what kind of ponzi is as worse as you stealing from your citizens in broad day light. cheap fools

    • Olusegun Alabi

      I second that bro.

  • Olusegun Alabi

    SEC should keep there opinions to themselves and focus on the economic issues Nigeria faces. Why are they even concerned? When the stock markets are currently worse off than this investment schemes. SEC I advise you guys to do your home work, build a better structure for your operations and mind your own business. Abi is it your money they are using?

  • Sad thing though, we all knew we would end up getting lumped in with these clowns. I remember reading an article awhile back about how when the OneCoin scam was finally exposed it would reflect badly on all crypto. Now here it is.

  • Mohammed Haruna

    Disgusting!!! Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Nigeria is not matured enough to make comment on Bitcoin Crytocurrency, their primary assignment which include checking the excesses of Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) and Local Stock Broking firms has not been fulfilled. Would they call the dwindling resource and uncertainty due to lack of precise Fundamental and Technical analyses of NSE a ponzi scheme? SEC is just another puppet used to cause distraction in a country that can not provide stable electricity and 100% security for her citizenry. They might be jealous of the success story of Bitcoinaires. Bitcoin is not a MLM Network but a decentralised Crytocurrency poised to crush paper currency monopoly. The scheme and and are MLM network with a bold “disclaimer” warning it members not to invest money they can not afford to loose. Above stated MMM programme has not business with Bitcoin mining or system, but an independent MLM network in with many Nigerians has earned substantial income; either active or passive incoming in a country threatened by hyper inflation and unemployment. SEC can not play a dictator in a country entrenched in Capitalist System.

  • Respectfully, I think Jamie Redman should investigate the difference between MLM and pyramid schemes. The first is totally legal, the second is NOT. That is quite a drastic difference, yet Jamie Redman seems to use them interchangeably with not even the slightest differentiation. Briefly, the difference between the two is how much income is derived directly from recruiting versus actual sales. If most of the income comes from what are essentially “headhunter” fees then it is a pyramid. If the opposite (and the income is the result of actual sales of a recruit) then it is MLM. I was a licensed real estate broker and manager for a major franchise and insurance company and managers got “override” (sic multilevel) commissions on the sales of their “underlings” as incentive to train them to sell more. Commission based income is a fat of life.