Italian Regulator Blocks Six Unauthorized Financial Services Websites


Today, the Italian Securities Regulator ordered Internet access providers to block local investors’ access to six websites offering unauthorized financial services.

18 November 2019, AtoZMarketsThe Nazionale Commission for the Società e la Borsa (CONSOB) is the regulator of financial markets in Italy. It said that listed companies have engaged in “illegal” and “misleading” marketing practices concerning the promotion of FX and cryptocurrency products.

Italian Regulator Blocks Financial Services Websites

Consob notably ordered the ban of the following websites:

  • Waltika Partners Ltd (https://imperial-finance.io);
  • CobraCFD Ltd (www.c0bracfd.com and www.cobracfd.biz/it);
  • Alfa Financial, Zurich Corporation and lsystems LTD (https://web.zurichcorporation.com);
  • Energy Capital Group Eood (www.omegafx.io);
  • Crypto Consultancy Ltd (www.cfmcapital.com).

However, the number of sites blacked out since last July. At the time, Consob obtained the power to order blackouts. Thus it rises to 83. The measures by which the companies mentioned above were ordered to end the activity. On Nov 11, it also blocked six financial services websites.

The prohibition of these websites by Internet service providers operating on the Italian market continues. For technical reasons, it may take several days before the blackout comes into effect.

The Commission also suspended three websites and a Facebook group for 90 days. Expedite Spzoo made the offering to the public residing in Italy concerning financial investments. That happened in the absence of the required authorization, including via the Omega website. The regulator suspended it under the consolidated law on finances.

Under the Consolidated Finance Act, advertising activities carried out in the absence of the required authorization through the websites. Those are Manuelcooper and Omegaita as well as the Facebook page relating to Mr. Emanuele Fiore on the public offer promoted by Expedite Spzoo for financial investments.

Read More: Chinese Military Plans to Adopt Blockchain Technology

Following Footsteps of ESMA

The financial watchdog said it had taken the final decision under Decreto Crescita. That also allows CONSOB to order Internet service providers (ISPs) to block access to such websites in Italy. In early June, the watchdog decided to follow in the footsteps of ESMA by banning the sale of binary options to customers. Also, it extends its restriction to the promotion of difference contracts (CFDs) to non-Professional investors.

More recently, however, the Ministry of Finance has completed its consultations on the registration and reporting requirements of the blockchain industry. The bill provides that cryptographic exchanges must fully report their activities to the authorities. However, that is an addition to the previous decree in May 2017.

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