Japan’s Hirose FX confirms its binary options app taken down from Apple’s App Store

Maria Nikolova

Hirose FX has confirmed that its clients may no longer download the LION BO mobile app from Apple’s App Store.

Several months have passed since Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) introduced changes to its iOS developer guidelines, saying that “Apps that facilitate binary options trading are not permitted on the App Store”. Ever since, most companies offering such apps on the App Store have been reluctant to provide any information on whether their apps were affected by the new policy. As a general rule, users have to check themselves whether a given application is available.

For Japanese retail Forex broker Hirose Tusyo Inc (TYO:7185), or Hirose FX, a check for the mobile binary options trading application LION BO results in a warning message “This item is not currently available in the Japanese/US/Mexican (etc) store”.

Today, in a brief announcement to its clients, Hirose FX confirmed that the LION BO application for iOS devices can no longer be downloaded from the iTunes Store, due to changes in the store policy. A trader that deletes the app and tries to re-download it will not be able to do so, the broker warns.

Traders, using smartphones other than iPhone, are offered to use an alternative – LION BO Plus +.

Apple and Google have made moves to take down binary options apps in response to a request by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC). Early in August this year, ASIC said it had contacted Apple and Google in connection to its review of app stores offering binary options apps.

The review highlighted more than 330 apps which were offered to Australians by entities and individuals that appeared to be unlicensed. Some 63% were offered by binary option issuers and facilitated trading, 25% were from various signal providers and the rest were controlled by introducing brokers or were apps designed to influence people to trade binary options.

Moreover, many of the mobile app descriptions contained apparently misleading statements about the profitability of trading. In addition, the bulk of these apps did not outline the risks of trading binary options, with 80% offering no risk warning at all.

ASIC said it was encouraged with the speed Apple and Google removed the relevant apps identified by ASIC from their respective app stores.

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