The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI), Securities Division has received a complaint from a Washington resident regarding HB.top, an alleged cryptocurrency trading platform.
The investor told DFI that they had been introduced to the HB.top platform by an individual they met through Facebook’s dating website. The individual moved the conversations with the investor to WhatsApp and sent her a link to install the HB.top platform on their phone. The individual told the investor that they made a lot of money with HB.top.
With the help of the individual, the investor opened an HB.top account and invested $38,000. Every few days, the individual told the investor to open their account and would direct them to place trades in their account. The investor saw a gain of approximately $20,000 in their account and trusted that the individual was helping them earn a profit.
After a few months, the investor requested to withdraw their funds. The investor was told that they did not operate in their account long enough to make a withdrawal and that their account would be frozen. The investor was told that they needed to pay a $20,000 fee in order to unfreeze their account and withdraw their funds. The investor lost their total investment of $38,000.
This appears to be what is commonly called “Advance Fee Fraud”, which can take many forms.
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.