Business

Dennis Wafula

French regulator blacklists 4 unauthorized crypto websites

French financial markets regulator Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) has added four websites to its list of blacklisted domains. According to the AMF, the blacklisted domains offered crypto investments in France without licenses.

The AMF, under Law no 2016-1691, is mandated to protect savings invested in financial products by the public. According to the law, no investment company can offer its products directly to the market without AMF’s knowledge. The investment firms have to either have approval from the AMF or be in possession of a registration number from the same body.

According to French regulator, the four domains—connect-coin.fr, solution-crypto.com, solutioncrypto.com, and bitoraxe.com—neither have a registration number nor has received an approval from its office. Of the four, only connect-coin.fr has been taken offline, while the rest remain in operation.

The cryptocurrency industry is a new and innovative industry rife with challenges. Many governments have put in place independent regulatory bodies, such as France’s AMF, to monitor its development. The AMF has been blacklisting sites since July 2017, but it was only in December that the regulator has set its sights on crypto sites. Currently, the regulator has blacklisted a total of 15 websites, including the new four domains, which it said have been offering crypto investments without authorization.

While the AMF is cracking down on websites operating illegally in France, the government is working towards the development of an environment conducive for the cryptocurrency industry. Besides the legal framework that is under development, the government has also lowered tax rates on virtual currency capital gains from 45% to 19%. The slash in taxes was a huge relief for crypto investors and shows the government is willing to support cryptocurrency.

The AMF plans to update its list of blacklisted domains, and is advising French citizens to always check for updates on its website.

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