Thai SEC Warns Against Deceptive Crypto Ads

Apr. 30, 2024
Thai SEC Warns Against Deceptive Crypto Ads

On April 29, Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a warning to crypto exchanges operating in the country, urging them to refrain from glamorizing crypto investments and adhere to prescribed advertising standards, as per a report from Bangkok Post.

Anek Yooyuen, Deputy Secretary-General of the Thai SEC, expressed the commission’s concern about crypto exchanges offering special privileges to onboard users. The SEC stressed that any crypto ad containing false, distorted, exaggerated, concealing, or misleading information is against Thailand’s regulations. 

Yooyuen said the SEC’s advertisement guidelines shield investors from risky situations. He cautioned that failing to follow the guidelines would lead to legal consequences. Thai advertising guidelines require advertisers to prove the “facts” stated in their marketing campaigns, ensuring compliance with the country’s laws.

Further, he added:

“When operators organize sales promotions by offering rewards to entice people to use the service, this could encourage the use of the service without considering the investment risks. This is especially the case for cryptocurrencies.”

The Thai SEC’s action mirrors steps taken by regulators in other major crypto markets. For example, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), an independent financial regulatory body in the UK, issued 450 alerts for illegal crypto ads between October 8 and December 31, 2023. Moreover, in November last year, Spain’s National Stock Market Commission (CNMV) exposed fraudulent crypto asset promotions on X (formerly Twitter).

The SEC reminded exchanges to include appropriate warnings about risks and advised them to avoid onboarding users through special promotions. Besides this, Thai agencies recently cracked down on a cryptocurrency mining operation suspected of stealing electricity. The raid in Ratchaburi and Samut Sakhon netted more than 650 mining devices valued at over 200m baht (about $5m), the Bangkok Post reported Monday.

Hackers Take Over Advertisements on Etherscan

Several Ethereum blockchain explorer Etherscan ads have recently been identified as part of a major phishing campaign targeting Etherscan users. On April 8, X community member McBiblets identified several ads on Etherscan as wallet drainers. McBiblets warned users not to click on those ads to avoid phishing sites.

Scam Sniffer, a blockchain investigation firm, attributed the large-scale phishing campaign to a lack of oversight from ads aggregators. The firm said insufficient filtering on platforms like Persona and Coinzilla, from where Etherscan aggregates ads, could expose users to phishing attempts. Moreover, Google Ads — Google’s online advertising platform — promoted malicious crypto websites last week, exposing users to a phishing scam.

Syed Ali Haider

Researcher & Editor
Ali Haider is a Blockchain enthusiast and writer passionate about enhancing the acceptance, adoption, and integration of Blockchain technology worldwide. He has also advocated for digital freedom and cybersecurity for many years.