Website of ill-famed binary options broker 23traders becomes unaccessible

Maria Nikolova

The Facebook page of the company that allegedly pushed a Canadian man to commit suicide features a message about Canadians being cut off from services.

The story around binary options broker 23traders has been quite grim, especially for its customers who have been increasingly posting messages on blogs and social media about being unable to get their money back, incurring substantial losses and facing horrible attitude of the broker’s representatives. Definitions of the customer “support” attitude typically involve adjectives like “aggressive” and “rude”.

This list has now grown to include the words “unresponsive” and “inaccessible” too, as customers of the ill-fame company have complaint of being cut off. FinanceFeeds has checked the website of 23traders and it displayed the following message:

“You are not allowed to access this page”.

The last post on 23traders’ Facebook page is dated February 6, 2017, with a comment below indicating that Canadians are being cut off from access to their accounts with the company. The broker has obviously resorted to cutting and running.

This marks a dismal development in an already dull story involving 23traders. This is the company alleged to have pushed a Canadian man to commit a suicide in December 2016. Fred Turbide of Edmonton, Alberta had lost all of his savings and a substantial amount of borrowed money, totalling more than CAD300,000 (USD 229,060). He lost about two-thirds of this sum on the platform, which, according to an investigative report by the Times of Israel, operates from Israel.

The promotional materials of the company, while it was active, claimed that it was operated by Hermes Ventures Ltd, allegedly located in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. 23Traders had also said it is regulated by the VFSC (Vanuatu International Financial Services Commission) under license number 14536. FinanceFeeds’ check on VFSC’s website returned no results for such an entity or number.

Global regulators are stepping up their efforts to combat binary options fraud. Canada’s Quebec financial regulator has opened a public consultation to change regulations, so that offering of binary options products with expiry terms of less than 30 days is prohibited to Quebec investors. Other regulators, like Italy’s CONSOB, however, have admitted they have limited powers to act against unregulated binary options firms and to protect investors. In fact, regulators around the world restrict themselves to issuing warnings against unregulated binary options brokers – most often, however, these warnings are published long after a company has folded its operations and has misappropriated customers’ money.

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