Italian regulator uses “Growth Decree” powers to order blocking of five unauthorized online trading websites

Maria Nikolova

Consob orders ISPs to block access from Italy to websites offering financial services without proper authorization.

The Italian Companies and Exchange Commission (CONSOB) has once again resorted to the powers granted to it under the so-called “Growth Decree”. Today, the regulator announces that it has ordered the blocking of five websites that offer online trading services to Italian investors without having the necessary authorization.

The companies and websites are listed below:

  • Red Bird Ltd (www.cfdtrend.com);
  • Mfi broker Ltd ( www.mfibroker.com);
  • Software and Media Ltd (https://boxinvesting.com);
  • Salvalax Ltd (www.fxsuit.com);
  • “FxRoyal24” (https://fxroyal24.co.uk).

The blocking of these websites by Internet service providers operating on the Italian market is ongoing. For technical reasons, it can take several days for the blocking to be implemented.

Until 2017, Consob has been publishing “warnings” concerning the risks connected with the services offered by unauthorized operators, which were only addressed to the general public. Since 2018, however, with the application of the new European regulation on the provision of investment services (Mifid2), the instruments given to Consob have been significantly enforced by the attribution of the new power to order the termination of the infringement to the unauthorized operators. Accordingly, Consob had only the power of asking the cancellation of the Italian version of the abusive sites to the host providers.

Thanks to the “growth decree”, CONSOB gains a new power – to order ISPs the blocking of the websites. Last week, the Italian regulator ordered the blocking of websites of four unauthorized financial services firms.

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