South Korea’s FSC Continues Initial Coin Offering Slap After Multiple Tokens Violate Rules


The debate over the continual ban against initial coin offerings (ICOs) in South Korea has finally been settled, but the news isn’t good. The top financial regulator in the country has decided that the ban will remain in place, though the cause is due to rule violations of local projects.

The Financial Services Commission (FSC) sees ICOs as a “high risk” activity to engage in already and has already issued warnings that the public needs to be cautious about their approach to investing in these projects. A recent survey conducted by the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) showed that money had illegally been raised by some of these projects involving Korean investors.

Performed in September 2018, the FSS survey was distributed to 22 local firms that held ICOs in other countries. The entity received responses from 13 of those firms, showing that there was a combined total of 566.4 billion won raised ($509 million). The research also indicated that the companies were going around the current ban in place by setting up paper companies, while still raising money from Koreas.

There were multiple ICO projects that chose not to offer crucial details that would be necessary for investors, like the financial statements and company profile. Some of the ICOs also provided false information, which was documented in the research. Considering the fact that tokens from these projects had dropped by 67.7% since the coins launched, these risks were substantial for investors.

The previous decision of the South Korean government was to decide the fate of ICOs in their country by November. The head of the office for government policy coordination, Hong Nam-Ki, had said a month before the decision that the review of this issue would need to be prolonged, leading to the eventual release of the survey to help with making this decision.

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