SEC Obliged AriseBank Creators to Pay Indemnities and Penalties Amounting to $2,7 Million

Jared Rice Sr., the former CEO of AriseBank company, and the former operating officer Stanley Ford, did not admit their guilt in conducting the fraudulent ICO. According to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), they both agreed to out-of-court settlement.

The U.S. Federal Court obliged them to pay $2.26 million as a compensation for damage, both $184,76 thousand as a fine, in addition to $68 thousand for expenses. As well as, in addition to pay penalties, they could be sentenced to a life ban from leading the projects or participating in the issuance of securities.

Reportedly, Rice did not have access to FDIC insurance and had no partnership with Visa, to offer banking services in Texas. Moreover, Rice has spent investors’ money for his own personal use, while repeatedly talking to mass media about the “non-existent” advantages of AriseBank. In addition, the police believe that Jared Rice Sr. hid from the investors the fact of his previous conviction for fraud and accusations under other charges.  

We want to remind you, that recently SEC have declared their intention to fine social media celebrities who promote scam-ICO in social networks.

SEC Is Going to Fine Social Media Celebrities Who Promote Scam ICOs

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CryptoMining.Farm Scam: 30 Victims Lost $1.34 Million

Thirty people have filed complaints to Thailand’s Technology Crime Suppression Division stating that they were victims of crypto mining scam, they allegedly lost 42 million baht ($1.34 million). The police thinks that the amount of victims can be bigger.

According to the victims’ words, the leaders of the scam convinced them to invest money into CryptoMining.Farm, a blockchain-mining website. One anonymous victim said to the Bangkok Post that one of the leaders promised investor an impossibly high return – 70% a year.

The victims signed contracts when they entered the website, the documents said that a customer may withdraw money at any time he/she wanted without any additional condition. However, the situation has changed since August. The victim stated that:

“From August the owner began imposing conditions for withdrawing the money. Then at the start of this month, the site announced it would start paying back investors in 84 installments which would take over seven years to complete. The payments were supposed to be made in foreign currencies [which] is not permitted by Thai laws.”

After a preliminary investigation, the police is sure that not 30, but 140 people became victims of the scam. Moreover, it can be related to a big scandal which happened in August 2018, when a popular Thai actor and his siblings stole about 797 million baht ($25.5 million).

According to the Bangkok Post, the company has two official offices in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, which may make the victims think that the company’s operations are legal.

Thailand treats digital money with caution and tries to regulate it. The Thai Ministry of Finance even issued a document last year where all the country’s cryptocurrency activities were regulated, including the taxation of participants of crypto market.

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Romance Scams: Total Loss Accounts For More Than $143 Million

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has recently published a report showing that romance scams are relentlessly gathering momentum. The number of romance scams has increased in 2.5 times, from 8,500 in 2015 to 21,368 last year, overtaking the number of any other type of consumer fraud.

Romance scams data

The data provided below shows that in 2015 the number of reports did not exceed 10,000, and the total loss was estimated at about $33 million. The situation has been worsening since 2016, when the reported loss accounted for $75 million, two times bigger than in 2015. However, the year of 2018 broke all the records when the total loss comprised over $143 million.   

Source: www.ftc.gov

How do scammers lure people?

Romance scammers usually create attractive and convincing personas on the dating sites and apps or social media, like Facebook, for example. They frequently use fake photos and names, but there were cases of assuming the identities of real people. The scammers lure people with their sob stories to convince victims to send them large amounts of money.

Once the romance scammers have people by the heartstrings, they say they need money for medical treatment or for any other quite sad reason. The fraudsters usually explain to victims that they are in the military and stationed abroad, thus, they cannot meet. The report says that most affected are people from 40 to 69, the rate of their losing money to romance scams is higher more than twice in compare to the rate of people in their 20s.

Tips how to not get engaged in a romance scam

  1. Do not send money or anything else to the sweetheart you have never met in person before.
  2. Tell your close friends about your sweetheart. People can become blinded when they are in love, thus, pay attention if your friends or family are concerned.
  3. Do not rush, just take it slowly. Try to ask questions, use a reverse-image search of the profile picture. If something does not match, it is a scam.

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SEC is Looking for Partners to Collect Blockchain Data

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have published an announcement that they are in search of companies that are involved in analyzing blockchain data.

According to official information, the SEC is looking for both large and small companies. As part of the cooperation, the regulator expects companies to provide data on the “most widely used” blockchain registers based on the volume of transactions in order to “monitor risk and improve compliance” associated with cryptocurrencies.

In addition, the companies will have to provide the Commission with information on how this data is extracted, transformed and verified.

Those who would like to cooperate with the SEC should send an application by e-mail with a brief description of their activities until February 14.

We want to remind you:

Does Blockchain Bring a Threat to the US National Security?

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The Monetary Authority of Singapore Warns Public About Scammers Who Are Trying To Sell Non-Existent National Cryptocurrency

While Iran is finding ways to adopt state-backed cryptocurrency, Singapore is fighting with rumours about launching its own cryptocurrency. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced that the state would not release any cryptocurrency.

The regulator posted a statement on the website:

“The MAS warns members of the public not to be misled by fraudulent websites that solicit investments in cryptocurrencies using fabricated information attributed to the Singapore Government.”

According to the MAS, scammers try to sell Singaporean cryptocurrency across the web. They create fake articles and news, mentioning respected news outlets, and spread that Singapore is launching a national cryptocurrency. Moreover, they state that the government chose a specific company to trade that cryptocurrency.

People, who are not engaged in cryptocurrency world, and who are not aware about latest news in it, should be extremely careful, as they often become victims of such crimes.

We remind you:

Scammers Try to Impersonate Major YouTube Influencers

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Scammers Try to Impersonate Major YouTube Influencers

Cyber criminals tried to pull of a huge scam by taking the disguise of the most popular YouTube celebrities, like Zoella and Jeffree Star. The scammers wrote messages to the subscribers, pretending to be real YouTubers. 

The messages contained a link, which supposedly led to a prize, but it obviously was a scam. The YouTube users subscribed to such large-scale channels as James Charles, Jeffree Star, Zoella, Rita Ora and others claimed to have received them.

One of the influencers, whose name appeared in the fraudster scheme, Philip DeFranco mentioned it in one of his videos. He warned his subscribers and asked them not to open the malicious link.

Moreover, he wrote about the scam on Twitter and soon get a response from YouTube.

The YouTube management promised to deal with the problem. They also encouraged YouTube viewers to ignore such messages and blocking the accounts sending them.

We remind you:

YouTube Will Remove All Videos with Dangerous Pranks and Challenges

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Why Did VanEck and SolidX Withdraw Their Bitcoin ETF Launch Applications?

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) officially announced that the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) withdrawn the application to launch the ETF, previously filed by VanEck and SolidX.

According to the SEC, the application was withdrawn on January 22. The commission does not state the reasons why CBOE decided to withdraw the application.

However, a lawyer, Jake Chervinsky, published his opinion on this situation on Twitter. The Chicago Board Options Exchange may have been expecting a refusal and did not want another SEC’s negative decision to influence the future of CBOE.

We remind you, that back in June, 2018 VanEck and SolidX filed an application to launch Bitcoin ETF. The commission postponed the decision-making terms a number of times. February 27, 2019 was named the final date.

We remind you:

SEC’s Jay Clayton Talks Crypto: What Future Awaits for the World of Digital Assets?

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