Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh announced via a press release on Wednesday that his Securities Division is now participating in "Operation Cryptosweep." Operation Cryptosweep is a task force started by the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) in 2018, to "begin a coordinated series of investigations into ICOs and cryptocurrency-related investment products."
According to the Maryland Attorney General's office, since the beginning of the year, "35 enforcement actions against Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and cryptocurrency-related investment products have been completed by state and provincial securities regulators in the United States and Canada." The Maryland Securities Division itself has initiated an enforcement action against a Maryland-based bitcoin trading platform, which led investors to believe they could earn 150% through a passive investment on the platform, and a Maryland resident who sold investments through that platform.
"Cryptocurrency investments are risky. Investors should be extra cautious when dealing with promoters who claim their offering does not have to be registered with securities regulators,” said Frosh. “Quick returns of 150% are as rare as Bigfoot. Make sure to do independent research on the product before you invest. Be aware of the risks, and contact the Maryland Securities Division with any concerns before parting with your hard-earned money.”