Anonabox, the tiny plug-and-play Tor router that raised nearly $600,000 on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter in less than a week, may be a fraud. Kickstarter’s Trust and Safety team suspended the project on Friday after a number of Reddit members have poked holes in its creators’ story.
Kickstarter announced the suspension in an e-mail sent to backers. In it, they point out that a review of the project uncovered evidence that it broke Kickstarter rules. The team added that all funding has been stopped and backers will not be charged for their pledges.
Questions regarding Anonabox came in nearly as quickly as donations did. In a Reddit AMA on the matter and in numerous other outlets online, people called into question Anonabox’s claim that it features custom hardware while others wondered if its open-source software was truly open-source.
As Quartz points out, some believe the Anonabox is little more than a cheap Chinese router with an inflated price. Based on images alone, the two products appear to be virtually identical with the only difference being the Chinese branding appears to have been removed from the Anonabox image.
The publication spoke with Anonabox developer August Germar about the matter. Germar told them he received no information on Kickstarter regarding why the project was suspended.
Given the wealth of evidence so far, do you believe Anonabox was trying to scam Kickstarter backers by simply selling hardware that already exists as their own? Let us know in the comments section below!