SEC 2019 Annual Report: Unlawful ICO Issuers Dropped, Crypto Project Penalties Over $4 Billion


The United States Securities regulator, SEC, has been busy since activity in the blockchain and crypto space picked up. This year alone, the commission suspended over 270 security issuers, a slight drop from 2018’s stats which stood at 280.

According to the latest SEC annual report, disgorgement and penalties collections were over $4 billion within the past year. Notably, the Securities Exchange Commission has reimbursed victim investors to a tone of $1.2 billion. The report released on November 6 further acknowledges that the SEC has enforced 862 actions based on malpractices in financial markets.

The commission concluded:

“Collectively, these actions send the clear message that, if a product is a security, regardless of the label attached to it, those who issue, promote, or provide a platform for buying and selling that security must comply with the investor protection requirements of the federal securities laws.”

SEC Crypto Enforcement 2019 Overview

The regulator’s wrath has befallen a couple crypto oriented projects this year, 31 digital asset-oriented projects have been frozen after the SEC obtained court orders. Most were caught up violating the federal law governing securities that were recently updated in 2019.

A number of crypto entities also found themselves as SEC targets owing to information disclosure. Bitcoin Generation digital exchange was suspended back in April after the commission sighted inefficiencies in amount and accuracy of information. The SEC has strongly advocated for proper registration processes to help curb Money Laundering and illegal funding within the crypto market.

Popular celebrities were also among those hunted down by the SEC in 2019 for engaging in unlawful crypto activities. Floyd Mayweather and DJ Khaled faced charges for promoting digital assets without disclosing the involvement of remuneration.

Firms that have already paid heavy settlements to the SEC include Block.One and Veritaseum. The latter was ordered to pay a disgorgement worth $8.4 million while Block.One settled 24 million following a funding that raised $4 billion.

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