CySEC sounds alarm on false license claims of RoboFXMarkets

abdelaziz Fathi

The Cypriot regulator today has warned against entering into transactions, particularly involving CFDs, cryptocurrency and forex trading, via online trading platforms operated by unlicensed providers.

In the warning, the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission provides the company’s name, website address and states that the entity has not added to its regulatory register.

CySEC said before that some of these illegal brokers were just spinoffs of previously shuttered companies while others misleadingly claim affiliation with other brokers that are already regulated in Cyprus and hold its CIF License. The watchdog has blacklisted the following domains:

 log-bit.com

 rynattrading.org

 robofxmarkets.com

 spursmarkets.com

Among the companies added to the list are RoboFXMarkets and SpursMarkets LTD, which falsely claim authorisation by the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.

Under current laws, CySEC has no powers to force internet companies to refuse financial advertisements or block access to their domains. It can only ask them to take down fraudulent promotions once they have been spotted. As a result, fraudsters and promoters of high-risk schemes have been able to place advertisements claiming to be based or licensed in Cyprus.

The watchdog stresses that these firms are not licensed to operate a brokerage business in Cyprus, nor are they affiliated with a regulated entity. Additionally, it warns that if consumers lost their money on platforms that are not licensed, they are not protected under the Investor Compensation Fund (ICF). This serves to protect the claims of covered clients and provide them with compensation, in case a member was unable to meet its financial obligations.

While many providers claim to be Cyprus-based, CySEC said, previously it believed such companies were based overseas and providing false addresses, adding that it would look into taking further action if companies were actually based within the country. It further explains that it is sometimes hard to find the names of the platforms’ operators on their websites, and that the addresses given as the company headquarters are often offshore letterbox addresses.

The Cypriot watchdog has recently revealed new details about its efforts to regulate crypto assets, hinting more discussions might already be underway. The CySEC wants to increase oversight of cryptocurrencies and related assets by integrating EU anti-money-laundering rules into the Cypriot laws.

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