The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) is warning the public of what is “likely to be an international ‘get-rich-quick’ cryptocurrency scam” called Bitcoin Revolution.
In an announcement on its website, the regulator said that the entity, with several websites including https://the-bitcoin-revolution.org/, has been claiming to be registered by the Maltese government, and licensed by the MFSA to provide services. Both claims were said to be false.
‘Bitcoin Revolution’ promoted itself via online advertisements and pages on several social media platforms. The names of “various prominent local personalities” were also said to be used as endorsers, without their permission.
The public was advised to keep from doing business with any entities with the name Bitcoin Revolution. “The MFSA strongly advises investors and consumers of financial services that prior to making any investment or entering into any financial services transaction they should make sure that the entity with whom the investment or transaction is being made is authorised to provide such services by the MFSA or another financial services regulatory authority as applicable,” the agency said, while also providing a list of licensees available at http://www.mfsa.com.mt/pages/licenceholders.aspx.
It isn’t the first time the regulator has had companies use its name in order to project an air of legitimacy. Last October, the MFSA warned of a platform called ‘Primetradingbot’ that was offering huge returns from BTC investments.
The latest MFSA warning comes shortly after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) singled out Malta’s blockchain sector as posing “significant risks” to the country’s financial system. The fund said that the blockchain-friendly territory could become a venue for money laundering and terrorist financing.
Malta has shown its openness to innovations in distributed ledger technology. The MFSA has held consultations to establish guidelines for initial coin offerings (ICOs) so as to distinguish these from traditional securities.
Just this month, the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) introduced its cryptocurrency Sandbox Framework where it is accepting applications for the use of blockchain by licensees.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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