Malta’s Financial Watchdog Warns Against ‘Dubious’ Crypto Trading Platform

Malta’s Financial Services Authority (MFSA) has warned of a “dubious” online crypto trading platform it says has falsely claimed to be licensed in the country, English-language newspaper Malta Today reports Oct. 25.

The platform in question, “Primetradingbot,” reportedly appears to be running a “high yield” Bitcoin (BTC)-related investment scheme, which the MSFA cautions has “a dubious nature with a high risk of loss of money”.

The MSFA has warned that Primetradingbot is not, as it claims, licensed by the watchdog, stating that “although this entity purports to operate from an address in Malta, the MFSA does not believe this to be the case,” adding:

“The MFSA wishes to alert the public, in Malta and abroad, that Primetradingbot is not licenced or otherwise authorised by the MFSA to provide any investment or other financial services which are required to be licenced or otherwise authorised under Maltese law.”

A list of entities that are legitimately authorized by the watchdog is available from the MFSA and can be viewed on the official website of the MFSA here. The MFSA has cautioned the public not to engage in any business or transactions with the suspect firm.

Dubbed the “Blockchain Island,” Malta is widely recognized as having a proactive and transparent crypto regulatory climate, drawing multiple high-profile crypto firms in to relocate there.

Under Malta’s Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFA), which was passed in July 2018, all practitioners — including lawyers, accountants, and auditors — who wish to liaise between crypto vendors and the MFSA have been required to undergo mandatory “continuous professional education” and to take an exam to receive a crypto agent qualification. As recently reported, 39 percent of those sitting the exam this fall attained a pass, despite examiners’ last minute attempts to ease the marking scheme.

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