ICO Alert: How We Work and What We Stand For 

ICO Alert maintains the only comprehensive database of ICOs and standardizes all of the associated due diligence information associated with each project.  

We have listed over 5,000+ ICOs in our system, but only display approximately 3,500+ projects that we consider legitimate. We provide this information to financial institutions, venture capital entities, and market researchers.

Why We're Different

More than 90% of all ICOs reach out to us to be listed on icoalert.com. Once the ICO has submitted their data to us, we have a data analyst review each project manually. The data analyst looks for blatant errors on the ICO website, reads through the whitepaper, and looks at the team’s credentials. The data analyst looks to make sure that the whitepaper and site are produced professionally, and also that the team behind the ICO is transparent and verifiable. If the ICO passes this basic test, they are then sent to our partner, ICO Ethics, for a thorough website and team audit. ICO Ethics will research the team of the ICO to make sure the people in the images are real, and that they are indeed associated with the project.  

 

Data

 

Furthermore, ICO Ethics will check the registration date of the website, and the location, to make sure that the data provided by the ICO matches the results of the website audit. Once the ICO has passed these tests, they will be listed on ICO Alert for the public to browse. When browsing ICO Alert, you can be sure that you are only looking at legitimate ICO projects.

 

ICO Alert has a full data team that manually vets each ICO that attempts to be listed on our site. In Q3 2018, icoalert.com listed 66% of all of the ICOs that were submitted to us. We manually review the team associated with the project, and make sure the team is in fact real people associated with the project. We find that many scams and poor quality ICOs attempt to hide their team, instead of showcasing their talent. We take transparency seriously, and will only showcase ICOs that have verifiable teams. Additionally, we use software tools to aid in our manual review. With the help of our partner LOCI, We cross reference each whitepaper against a database of patents to reduce plagiarism risk and help investors synthesize this new asset class. When browsing ICO Alert, you can be sure that you are only looking at high quality projects.

 

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Ethics

ICO Alert has partnered with ICOEthics.com in order to provide a deeper level of vetting for each ICO. ICO Ethics independently researches the team and advisors, and uses automated tools to verify the integrity of the ICO’s website. This way, as an ICO Alert user, you never have to worry about coming across a scam project.

Problems in the ICO Industry

We have recently seen many listing sites promoting any project that is willing to pay to be listed. We see this as a conflict of interest, and instead objectively validate each project in order to make sure we are showcasing the best ideas in the blockchain ecosystem. Instead of providing ratings, which can be subjective (and can also be purchased), we are focused on providing objective data for the community to consume and evaluate projects independently. If you are interested in the data services we provide, learn more here.

Mike Finch headshotThere will be others who use their platforms to benefit the greater good, all while the bad actors in the space are exposed and weeded out. It takes a full effort to ensure that the narratives we enforce are the ones that will push the industry forward.

Focusing on the projects that are excelling instead of the projects that are declining is key, while we weed out the projects and third parties taking advantage of an immature industry and novice users/investors.

–Mike Finch, ICO Alert Co-founder and COO, State of the ICO Market

What's All the Hype About?

While it is clear from the graph below that the irrational exuberance has exited the ICO space, that now means it is time for the industry to focus on producing valuable technology applications that make the world a better place.

Number of ICOs listed by month

Instead of get rich quick schemes, we're focused on helping investors sift through the noise and discover innovative projects that will be around for years to come. With this in mind, we have decided to raise our standards to be listed, which is portrayed in the declining listings numbers over time. While the ICO market has definitely consolidated, we see this as healthy maturation and are excited to see where the industry takes us.

To see more of our data analyzed, check out our ICO Insights Series.

ICO Funding

We have noticed large discrepancies and inaccuracies in reported ICO funding across the industry. While the blockchain is supposed to be a transparent public ledger, it is rather difficult to extract useful analytics at scale. For this reason, we have partnered with Elementus.io to help us provide objective insights to our community. Check out their animated history of token sales to see how ICOs have changed over time: