If there is one thing holding cryptocurrencies back when it comes to mass use and adoption is some people’s fear of being victims of a hacking attack or even worse; a scam. The latter is, still, a very frequent development that threatens to endanger the industry by taking advantage of naive users.

That is why some countries have invested numerous resources, including time and money, to warn people against possible crypto scams. Such is the case of Australia, through the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, which issued a new warning this week for people to be alert at a crypto project that is considered suspicious.

GFC Investments and Dartalon Ltd.

The ASIC, which is known around the industry as the country’s financial watchdog, published an official warning against a fraudulent entity that goes by two names: GFC Investments and Dartalon Ltd.

According to the ASIC, the entity has been identified as a dangerous one for making business. The financial regulator claims that the company (or “companies,” if you will) “has made unsolicited calls or sent emails about investing, financial advice, credit or loans,” without having an official Australian Financial Services license or an Australian Credit license from the ASIC.

“ASIC advises this company could be involved in a scam. Do not deal with this business as it is unlicensed in Australia,” says the organization. The ASIC offers users additional information and links on how to deal with investment scams and banking and credit card scams in its website.

It Claims to Offer a Complete Suite of Services

People in Australia need to be very alert at this specific case. Per Finance Magnates, GFC Investments’ flagged page will offer the opportunity to trade several digital assets, not to mention foreign exchange (forex) services and contracts for differences. Browsing the website, one can see that it claims to be offering those services in the business for seven years, beginning in 2012.

ASIC identifies the company as Dartalon Ltd, “also known as GFC Investments.” It shows its address, being at Suite 305, Griffith Corporate Centre, 1510, Beachmont Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Additional details, such as the phone number, the email, and the website, are also provided.

Of course, it is not the first time that the Australian Securities and Investments Commission warns people against possible fraudulent projects and schemes. Most recently, the organization released notes regarding five ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) and crypto-asset funds that were considered as misleading.

The ASIC also noted that it has intentions to augment regulatory overseeing of cryptocurrency exchanges and ICOs, which are two of the most dangerous platforms or developments in the industry because of the risk of scams and frauds.

Recent Cases

The risk of scams, frauds, and other criminal activities extend well beyond the Australian border, sadly. For example, the French stock market regulator, AMF, observed this month that there was a 14,000% increase in enquiries related to fraudulent crypto services and offers last year, compared to 2016.

If you need to identify the latest crypto scams, you will not have to go very far: just last week, a couple of blockchain startups RepuX and JoyToken, tricked investors into losing nearly $8 million.

By Andres Chavez


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