Ontario Securities Commission Warns Investors Of Five Crypto Firms

News, Regulation | May 22, 2018 By:

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), a regulatory agency which administers and enforces securities legislation in the Canadian province, has issued a warning against five companies that are promoting investments in cryptocurrencies without having the necessary provincial registrations.

“The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is warning investors about BTCReal, BitSerial, Hypercube Ventures LP, CabinCoin OÜ, and BaapPay Inc,” the OSC said. “These firms appear to be involved in schemes that target Ontario investors and encourage them to trade or invest in cryptocurrencies.”

BTCReal, which manages the website btcreal.biz, claims to provide full investment services for cryptocurrency-related investments and forex. It also promises high returns over short periods.

BitSerial, which operates the website bitserial.io, claims to offer opportunities to invest in “BTE Tokens.” It also encourages investors to participate in a lending program where they can exchange bitcoin, Litecoin, or ethereum for BTE Tokens that are “lent out” for high returns.

Hypercube manages the websites hypercube.vc, hypercube.fund, vnn.money and vnn.cash, which encourage investors to buy “emission pools” for the purpose of generating “VNN cryptocurrency.” The other two companies, CabinCoin and BaapPay, are reportedly advertising unregistered initial coin offerings (ICO).

“Any distribution to an Ontario resident requires a prospectus or exemption from the prospectus requirement, which Bitserial, Hypercube, CabinCoin and BaapPay do not have,” the regulator said. “Investors should consider the risks associated with investing in cryptocurrencies, and be aware that the marketing of high returns is often an indication of investment fraud.”

Last month, the OSC issued an Investor Alert on BitConnect, which manages the websites bitconnect.co and bitconnectcoin.co, where it claims to operate an online exchange platform known as the BCC Exchange. These sites offer multiple investment opportunities that include “mining,” “trading” and “staking” BitConnect Coin.