Last week, Arizona’s legislators took the strange step of preparing laws to accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as tax payments. This is equivalent to Canada Revenue Agency announcing it will accept Canadian Tire or Monopoly money as payment.

Financial regulators in most countries now realize that the digital currency world is as dangerous as the Vancouver Stock Exchange or pink sheets used to be, a playground where fraudsters bilk unwitting investors. Anyone can create a cryptocurrency out of thin air.

Venezuela recently launched the Petro, while Iran is also eyeing the development of its own digital currency. Anyone can fix a price and issue an ICO, or initial coin offering, to launch a startup company.

Hustlers are busy creating websites that vanish without a trace after collecting investor money. Some create fake cryptocurrency exchange sites where bogus trading figures and prices are posted to entice money from the gullible.

So much so that the police is now getting involved. In December, a Quebec man was jailed and fined after fleecing $15 million from Canadian and American investors with an ICO called PlexCoin. Read more from business.financialpost.com…

thumbnail courtesy of financialpost.com