State securities regulators report a tripling of digital asset enforcement measures
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- Internet and social media fraud is also on the rise, according to NASAA.
- State regulators reported 2,202 enforcement actions in 2020, resulting in a restitution of $ 306 million.
- Self-directed IRA scams targeting seniors and retirees are on the rise.
State securities regulators “have reported a tripling of enforcement actions involving digital assets and almost twice as many cases involving bad actors using self-directed individual retirement accounts,” according to Joe Borg, director of the Alabama Securities Commission and co-chair of the Law Enforcement Section of the North American Securities Administrator Association.
According to NASAA Execution report 2021 on 2020 data, state securities regulators took 2,202 enforcement actions in 2020, leading to $ 306 million in restitution orders, fines of $ 42 million and criminal penalties of 919 years, including incarceration and probation.
In the NASAA report, which includes responses from 50 jurisdictions across the United States, state securities regulators reported actions against 497 registered parties, including 153 investment advisers, 115 advisor representatives, investment, 110 brokerage firms and 119 brokerage agents.
For the 2020 reporting year, state securities regulators brought 619 enforcement actions against unregistered parties, the NASAA report says.
“Data from this year’s report shows a huge commitment of resources to end programs related to precious metals and other commodities, digital assets, and internet and social media fraud that have spread during the pandemic,” Borg said.
Regarding online investment scams, in 2020 state regulators opened 214 investigations and initiated 84 enforcement actions regarding securities offerings promoted on the internet and social media. This represents an increase from the 141 investigations opened and 64 enforcement actions taken against online systems in 2019.
Maryland Securities Commissioner and NASAA President Melanie Lubin says self-directed IRA scams targeting seniors and retirees are on the rise, and state securities regulators are raising concerns in Washington .