The U.S. state's securities regulator, the Alabama Securities Commission (ASC), has supported its colleagues in Texas and New Jersey in hitting out at ICOs that are soliciting local citizens. The cease-and-desist order which was published yesterday claimed that the agency has ordered purported cryptocurrency mining firm Extrabit to cease its token sale offering in the state.
The ASC declared the company has been illegally begging Alabama investors with what it considers an unregistered securities offering after it announced its token sale on the website of WSFA, an NBC-affiliated TV station recognized in the state capital, Montgomery. While presently the online advertisement appears to have been taken down, the agency said in the order that the firm originally claimed that investors in the pre-ICO phase could buy Extrabit's token "EXB" at half price.
The advertisement claimed that in order to take part in the pre-sale, the user should invest $20,000 and after the purchase, the tokens will be sent to MyEtherWallet within 48 hours. Then, Extrabit's white paper states that, since the firm generates its profits chiefly from mining bitcoin, zcash and monero, it pledges a 185 percent return on investment every quarter for investors who maintain a positive balance in their EXB wallet.
As well as offering unbooked securities, the ASC said the project made "materially misleading" suggestions to deceive investors. Extrabit is not the only token project that is targeting residents in Alabama. A Google search for "token sale" on the WSFA website currently comes up with over 200 press release-style ads from various ICO projects.
The ASC has also checked two other token sale projects, called LEV and Platinum, with cease-and-desist orders entered on May 2 and May 18. Like with Extrabit, the agency charged the two projects of selling unregistered securities in Alabama while making vaporous promises to potential investors over the likely returns on investment.