Friday, April 19, 2024

SEC issues advisory against firm asking public to do online tasks

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has released a public advisory against online entity Tonik-Shop for enticing the public to invest their money with a promise of high monetary rewards or profits.

Based on the reports and information gathered the SEC, Tonik-Shop, thru its online platform, is engaged in a scheme known as “Tasking and Recharging” where the public is offered online jobs by performing certain tasks with a promise of receiving monetary rewards or what they call commissions and once a task is completed, the investor will be given another task to perform for the same promise of receiving higher commissions where additional funding or recharging and payment of tax from the victim is necessary to withdraw their earnings.

“Notably, a Tasking and Recharging Scheme involves the offering and sale of securities in the form of ‘investment contracts’ as defined under the Securities Regulation Code,” the agency said.

The SEC pointed out that an investment contract exists in the “Tasking and Recharging Scheme” as there is an investment or placement of money in a common enterprise with a reasonable expectation of profits to be derived from the efforts of others.

However, a Tasking and Recharging Scheme has the characteristics of a “Ponzi Scheme” where monies from new investors are used in paying “fake profits” to prior investors and is designed mainly to favor its top recruiters and prior risk takers and is detrimental to subsequent members in case of scarcity of new investors, the SEC said.

“Hence, the offering and selling of securities in the form of investment contracts using the ‘Ponzi Scheme’ which is fraudulent and unsustainable, is not a registrable security,” it added.

The agency also said Tonik-Shop is using a fake certificate of incorporation to make it appear that it is legitimate.

“In view thereof, the public is hereby advised to exercise caution in dealing with any individual or group of persons soliciting investments for and on behalf of Tonik-Shop,” the agency said.

“The public is further advised not to invest or to stop investing in the investment scheme being offered by the subject entity or its representatives.”

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