The British Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has warned the public about First BTC FX, a supposed clone firm offering fraudulent crypto investments.
Using details of an FCA-authorized firm
According to an FCA warning published on Sept. 20, First BTC FX is posing as authorized firm First Global Limited. First Global is a trade name for nonprofit organization International First Committee Association. First BTC FX also claims to represent a trade name of First Global on its website firstbtcfx.com.
Clone firms posing as legal entities
The scam entity claims to provide premium-quality trading services for commodities, forex, indices, shares and cryptocurrencies. In its crypto trading section, First BTC FX describes an investment scheme, stating that a minimum investment amount of $100 can “gain the effect” of $3,000.
In its “Risk Disclosure” section, the clone firm again uses the details of First Global, adding that the company does not provide services for residents of the United States, Canada, Israel and Iran.
In its statement, the FCA warned the public against clone firms — fraudulent entities that copy details of legal firms, such as their name, website, address or firm reference numbers in order to mislead investors to think that they do represent the actual firm. The regulator wrote:
“Be aware that the scammers may give out other false details or mix these with some correct details of the registered firm.”
The recent warning adds another crypto-related scam entity to a wide list of fraudulent firms operating in the United Kingdom. On May 25, the FCA blacklisted an entity known as ICAP Crypto after previously issuing a similar warning against illegal crypto-related firm Next Coin Market.
In July, the authority issued its finalized policy statement on crypto, claiming that it will not regulate Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) as part of its guidance on crypto assets.