[NEW YORK] On Friday, US securities regulators won an emergency order to block the Telegram Group messaging app for raising funds by selling unregistered cryptocurrency to investors.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission said that Telegram sold 2.9 billion digital tokens called Grams, without registering tokens as securities and without disclosing risks to investors.
The company, whose Messenger encrypted messaging program visits about 300 million users worldwide every month, has attracted more than $ 1.7 billion from US and foreign investors.
In a statement filed with the US District Court in New York, the SEC said Telegram had planned to deliver the grams to consumers by the end of October.
According to SEC representatives, buyers of grams will be able to resell them on the open market with sales, which will be promoted by Telegram and its affiliates.
“The defendants plan to sell billions of securities that quickly fall into the hands of American investors, without providing these investors with important information about their business operations, financial condition, risk factors and management,” the SEC complaint said.
The SEC requested a temporary restraining order, which stated: “Once the Grams enter public markets, it will be practically impossible to cancel the Offer, given that the identity of many buyers will be kept secret, and given the variety of unregulated markets where the Grams can be sold.” including platforms that promise anonymity and encryption to mask transactions. ”
Last year, the SEC stepped up its efforts to fight companies that raise funds through questionable digital currencies, which, he said, are ripe for possible fraud.