Italy’s regulator orders blackout of Binetrix, The ActiveTrades and E-trade.cc
Italy’s financial watchdog, Consob, has recently taken action to block access to five newly identified websites that offer financial services without proper authorization from the regulator. This move aims to safeguard Italian investors from potential fraud and other risks associated with unregulated providers of financial services.
Consob, the regulatory authority responsible for overseeing the Italian securities market, has been actively cracking down on illegal financial services to protect retail investors. This effort encompasses not only unauthorized domestic entities but also extends to firms operating under licenses from other jurisdictions. The strict measures against these unauthorized actors in the market are in response to offshore brokers attempting to target online trading activities in Italy.
In its latest efforts, Consob has contacted internet service providers in Italy, urging them to block access to the following websites:
- “Binetrix” (website https://binetrix.com );
- “Bitbinx” (website https://bitbinx.com and related page https://trade.bitbinx.com);
- “E-trade” (website https://www.e-trade.cc and related page https://client.e-trade.cc);
- “The Active Trades Ltd” (website https://theactivetrades.com );
- “FX Modex” (website https://fxmodex.com and related pages https://client.fxmodex.com and https://webtrader.fxmodex.com).
A glimpse at the websites of the brokers added out by the Italian financial regulator shows a well-known tactic to attract inexperienced clients to trade highly leveraged products. Additionally, some of these brands are clone websites, designed to mimic legitimate platforms, to deceive unsuspecting individuals into divulging their personal and financial information.
Among the identified websites, Active Trades Ltd. operates through the domain ‘theactivetrades.com,’ while E-trade can be accessed through ‘e-trade.cc.’ Scammers behind these websites opted to employ highly similar names to two regulated brokers, ActivTrades and E*TRADE, which can potentially mislead customers to think they are dealing with the genuine company.
Scam clone websites typically imitate the design, layout, and functionality of well-known and trusted financial institutions, such as banks, payment platforms, and investment firms. They often employ similar domain names or create URLs that are nearly identical to the genuine sites. These deceptive tactics aim to trick users into believing they are interacting with a legitimate platform, encouraging them to enter their confidential information, including passwords, credit card details, and social security numbers.
The Italian regulator found new tools to address illegal operators in the market when the ‘Growth Decree’ extended its powers far beyond. Thanks to the decree, CONSOB can order Italian internet service providers (ISPs) to block websites in the region. Due to technical reasons, it can take several days for the black-out to come into effect when these websites shut for a temporary period.