Date Posted: 
Thursday, March 16, 2023

The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI), Securities Division has received a complaint from a Washington resident regarding, a website claiming to be “a leading provider of Contracts for Difference (CFDs), delivering trading facilities on Binary Options, forex, commodities, cryptocurrencies, ETFs, and indices, alongside innovative trading technology.”

The investor discovered and communicated using WhatsApp.  The investor deposited $500 into a trading account, and purportedly received all the necessary paperwork documenting the opening of the account and the funds in it.  The investor subsequently elected to withdraw the funds as well as the supposed profits.  According to records at the time, the balance in the account was approximately $47,000.  The investor was told that all the paperwork was in order and that the withdrawal was processing and in a pending status.  Subsequently, the company’s representative advised the investor that a Global Trading Certificate (GTC) was required to be uploaded to the account, as well as a 20% company fee, payable in Bitcoin, was also required to be paid in order to complete the withdrawal.  The cost of the GTC was purportedly $5,700.      

This appears to be what is commonly called and “Advance Fee Fraud”.  Learn more about advance fee fraud.

DFI urges consumers to exercise extreme caution before responding to any solicitation offering investment or financial services. Investment professionals need to be licensed with DFI to offer investments to Washington residents. In addition, most investment products sold need to be registered with DFI. To check the licensing status and to find out if there are any complaints against an investment professional or investment product, please visit FINRA Brokercheck or contact the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions, Securities Division at (360) 902-8760. If you live outside of Washington State, contact your state securities regulator.

If a consumer believes a person or company has violated state law or acted improperly regarding an investment product or service, they may file a complaint with the Securities Division.

Additional resources

Virtual currency, cryptocurrency, and digital assets information for consumers

Information regarding investing strategies, investment products, and how to protect yourself from fraud

What you can do to avoid investment fraud