Thailand SEC Releases Warning Statement On ICOs

  • The Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand recently released a report about the legality of certain initial coin offerings (ICOs) and other cryptocurrencies.
  • In it, it warns that some of them have not met regulatory standards and may put investors at risk.

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has released a warning to the public about investing in initial coin offerings (ICOs). The report explains that some of the coins being offered did not receive SEC approval, which means that investing in them could carry serious risk.

Additionally, the Thai SEC detailed that the tokens in question have not had their smart contracts audited by official ICO portals, increasing the risk of investment, according to local news outlet the Bangkok Post.

The report identified nine digital tokens and ICOs that were not authorized by the SEC, including: Every Coin, Orientum Coin (ORT Coin), OneCoin and OFC Coin, Tripxchain Coin (TXC Coin), TUC Coin, G2S Expert ICO, Singhcom Enterprise ICO, Adventure hostel Bangkok ICO and Kidstocurrency ICO.

 Many of these coins have been promoted on social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube, which set off red flags for the Thai SEC. The regulator also warned that some of these cryptocurrencies are operated like Ponzi schemes, encouraging users to sell the cryptocurrency to their friends and family in exchange for referral bonuses.

Although not explicitly named, this could be in reference to OneCoin. OneCoin has previously been shut down by the Chinese government. The organization, widely believed to be a Ponzi scheme, has received scrutiny online. Operated as a “private blockchain,” some see it as little more than a scheme, especially after countries like China, India, and Italy issue warnings about OneCoin.

There are opportunists who persuade individuals to invest in digital assets by assuring investment returns generated from digital tokens that are structured like pyramid schemes.

SEC of Thailand

The regulator’s move represents the continuing involvement of federal governments in the cryptocurrency space. The ICO boom of 2017 put the fundraising method under regulatory scrutiny.

This new financial instrument doesn’t fit under any one regulatory body, and confuses many regulatory bodies. Despite these challenges, governments are stepping in to police the space. Earlier this month (October 19, 2018), the United States’ SEC announced that it would be launching a new “Finhub” division to engage with ICO startups.

Meet BOB: PundiX’s New Blockchain Phone

Will Heasman

BOB, or Blok on Blok, is PundiX's new blockchain-powered phone which will run entirely on Function X - the firm's bespoke blockchain. PundiX, which set itself up as a blockchain point of sales solution, unveiled BOB at the IFA 2019, in Berlin this week.

Beyond Blockchain

Although the phone is a blockchain-focused device, it will also include interoperability with the Andriod operating system. Users will be able to switch from Function X to Android in an instant; opening opportunities up to a broader demographic. 

The blockchain side of the device also allows the use of decentralized apps (dapps). On top of this, the phone is set to double as a node for the FunctionX blockchain. Customizability is also listed among the benefits, with the device's exterior modifiable by what PundiX dubb, a "MOD assembly kit."

According to Coindesk, the phone will retail at $599 on Kickstarter where it will be available for preorder in Q4 2019. Initially, production will be limited, with PundiX relaying that only 5,000 units will be manufactured as a prototype test run, prior to its official launch.

Zac Cheah, co-founder, and CEO of Pundi X Noted that BOB is just one "big step" in PundiX's greater plans:

BOB marks a big step forward in our mission of creating a Blockchain Internet, a fully decentralized network where every piece of data shared is under the owner’s control. More importantly, BOB gives a sneak peek of a world powered entirely by blockchain technology, where everyone has control over their own data, and everything is executed with the expectations of immutability and transparency.

BOB isn't the only blockchain phone soon to be on the market; there have been quite a few attempts at making a blockchain-based phone, one of which is Sirin Lab's FINNEY - known widely as the world's first blockchain-phone.

Interestingly, it was reported last week that Finney, which has been under development for more than a year, will be available on the Bangladeshi market as soon as October.  

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