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Thousands duped by illegal trading platforms in Vietnam

By Dat Nguyen   June 27, 2021 | 04:17 pm PT
Thousands duped by illegal trading platforms in Vietnam
Police bust the headquarter of illegal trading platform Hitoption.net in Hai Phong City. Photo courtesy of Hai Phong Police.
Forex trading fraud has become widespread in Vietnam with hundreds of thousands of investors lured by the promise of high profits offered by tricksters.

Hai Phong police last Tuesday busted a large illegal trading network in the northern port city with 16 platforms in which over 115,700 investors had poured in more than VND7.5 trillion ($326 million).

Among the platforms was Hitoption.net, a forex trading platform with 969 investors.

The operators let investors bet on whether a currency will rise or fall in a period of 30 seconds. If correct, he or she will receive a profit of 95 percent of the bet, and if incorrect all the money will be lost.

They also let investors rely on robots to make the bet for them with a guaranteed profit of 6-15 percent a month.

The operators also hired nearly 100 employees to make phone calls to invite more investors to join the schemes.

But police said that after a while, the operators would tamper with the robots to ensure the bets are lost and not allow investors to withdraw their money.

Last month, Hanoi police busted a group of operators who were running four illegal trading platforms in which 12,000 people have poured $4.3 million.

This group assured a 15-30 percent profit a month for investors in forex, gold or cryptocurrency.

Police found that the operators can interfere with investors’ accounts at anytime and there was no connect between the platforms and the global forex platforms as the operators had advertised.

The websites they used were Rforex.com, Yaibroker, Vistaforex, Exswiss and 15 others.

Hanoi police estimate that there are around 300 illegal forex trading platforms in Vietnam that have attracted many investors.

Dinh Thi Thu Thuy, head of the economic division under Hanoi Police, said that the bust should serve as a wakeup call for many Vietnamese who are getting involved in illegal trading platforms.

No forex trading platform has been approved by the State Bank of Vietnam, and these platforms often carry high risks, she told the Tuoi Tre newspaper.

Many of them operate pyramid schemes to trick investors into thinking they can make quick profits without thorough knowledge of the assets, she added.

Economist Huynh Trung Minh said that a 6-15 percent or higher guarantee in monthly profit is typically a trap, and is difficult for an average investor to obtain.

Once investors have put their money in such schemes, it will be difficult to withdraw it, he added.

 
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