The number of unlawful sites soliciting crypto investments from investors in Belgium has now reached 131 entities, an update to list of such sites indexed by the country’s Financial Services Markets Authority (FSMA) indicates.
Even then, “This list cannot be considered as exhaustive,” the regulator writes.
According to the FMSA:
“The Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA) has, on several occasions, warned the public against the activities of various companies that are operating unlawfully in Belgium. This list comprises all those (cryptocurrency) companies that have been the subject of a warning in the course of the past four years.”
In particular, the list includes:
- “companies that offer, in or from Belgium, financial services and products without complying with Belgian financial legislation (no authorization/failure to publish a prospectus / etc.)”
- “companies about which, in addition to any infringements of the financial legislation and regulations the FSMA supervises, the latter has identified serious evidence of investment fraud.”
- “companies behind ‘recovery room’ fraud.”
(According to FraudGuides, in recovery room scams, “fraudsters contact victims they’ve already ripped off claiming they work with law enforcement and that they can help them recover their money.” Fraudsters in these schemes hope to glean more personal information from the targets in order to exploit them again.)
The FMSA’s list, updated October 26th, bears 21 new names, including “trade-my-bitcoin.net” (website down); “london-exchange.net” (account suspended); and “capital-traders.com” (also down).
A site called Crypto Chain University also maintains a list of allegedly fraudulent crypto sites, based on information it says it gleaned from forum participants at Bitcointalk.org.
“Especially during the peak of Bitcoin to 20k in December 2017,” Crypto Chain University writes, “many ICO projects were created, and of that lot, at least 95% of them were scams, they might look legit but most of their teams are fake, whitepaper are (sic) copy-paste from other projects so beware of them.”