Hong Kong’s fight against fake crypto exchanges continues

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The Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong’s (SFC) issued a warning against HKCEXP, which it claims lured investors by falsely claiming to be an “FSC-registered business.”

Hong Kong’s fight against fake crypto exchanges continues

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The Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong (SFC) has issued an alert against HKCEXP, which it says is a suspicious trading platform claiming to be registered with the regulator.

The SFC had set a deadline of Feb. 29 for crypto exchanges to apply for an operational license. Exchanges failing to submit their license applications would need to wind up their business in Hong Kong by May 31.

Notice issued by the Hong Kong SFC about the closure of crypto license applications. Source: sfc.hk

The regulator received license applications from 22 crypto trading platforms, including four exchanges that had applied under the SFC’s previous opt-in regime for crypto trading platforms.

List of all crypto exchanges and trading platforms that applied for operation licenses in Hong Kong. Source: sfc.hk

Despite SFC’s effort to make the information public, Hong Kong continues to face challenges in tackling fake entities that portray as legitimate crypto exchanges. Its latest is against HKCEXP, which it says lured investors by falsely claiming to be an “FSC-registered business.”

Hong Kong SFC added HKCEXP to its list of alerts as a suspicious crypto trading platform. Source: sfc.hk

The Hong Kong SFC also accused HKCEXP of providing a fake Hong Kong address of registration. One of the victims informed SFC that the crypto exchange charged exorbitant fees for funds withdrawal.

The SFC will publicly maintain a list of crypto platforms that will receive operational licenses as a way to raise awareness among the masses for safe crypto trading.

Crypto exchanges that failed to apply for license registration are subject to limited operational capability and are barred from indulging in marketing activities in Hong Kong.

Related: Hong Kong SFC issues warning over imposter crypto exchange posing as MEXC

Earlier in March, the SFC identified and blocked several fake websites impersonating major local cryptocurrency exchanges.

The online perpetrators created several fake domains impersonating two licensed exchanges in Hong Kong, including OSL Digital Securities and Hash Blockchain Limited, also known as HashKey.

The SFC urged investors to verify trading platforms using its public register of licensed persons and registered institutions, as well as the list of licensed virtual asset trading platforms for relevant information on licensed entities, including their official websites.

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