Trouble in NFT land rocked the Philippines as an NFT project led by local founders, Surf Sharks Society, is revealed to have rug-pulled.
Some of the key communication channels have gone offline or become inaccessible, leading to stakeholders and the community scrambling as they try to find out what actually happened.
According to news and statements spread on social media, the rug pull took place during the course of the project’s public mint phase. In a statement posted by the founders on the Surf Shark Society Twitter account, they claim that their blockchain developer “abandoned the project and withdrew the public treasury” with the reported amount reaching up to USD $25,000 worth in USDT, with others saying that it is potentially higher.
I want to let everyone know that the founders are here.
Shortly after the mint, our blockchain developer has abandoned our project and withdrew the public mint treasury.
We understand your frustrations and we take full responsibility for this situation. We apologize.
— Surf Shark Society (@surfsharksoc) March 3, 2022
Multiple Surf Shark Society-related channels also went offline or became inaccessible including their website and their Discord channel. While no statement has been released regarding the website going offline, Surf Shark Society founders have said that they have “moved the roles” on their Discord server, explaining why some members were not able to access it as the incident took place.
All hope may not be lost though as the Surf Shark Society founders are promising a refund for those affected by the incident — although details as to how that would go are not available as of press time.
Surf Shark Society described itself as a collection of 3,333 unique NFTs with designs inspired by anthropomorphic sharks. The project was first announced back in late December of 2021 and quickly gained popularity as it teamed-up with Filipino influencers as part of their promotional push. The project runs on the Solana blockchain network, known for its cheaper fees and faster transaction times than Ethereum.
About Rug Pulls
Rug pulls are a malicious tactic in cryptocurrency investments wherein key project members suddenly pull out mid-development together with investor and stakeholder money.
This sometimes happens when the value of a coin, token or NFT reaches a high value or once an enough number of users swap their mainnet coins to whatever coin the developers are using, with the project team members then withdrawing or mass selling their share of the tokens driving the value down to zero.
One of the most infamous instances of cryptocurrency rug pull schemes was the Squid Game token rug pull which was caught during a livestream session by Twitch user The_Dent.
Surf Sharks Society has been one of the highest profile cases of a rug pull in the Philippines, with multiple influencers and partners promoting the product.