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The UK's Financial Conduct Authority has, far too late, waded into the scandal over businesses that offer completely unnecessary, and very costly, services relating to the mis-selling of Personal Protection Insurance. The industry around selling what amounts to little more than form-filling assistance and which has collected in excess of GBP1,000 million, has force-fed advertising and is now ramping up the pressure on those who have not yet made a claim. The FCA has countered with its own advert. It's rubbish and in the wrong place.

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We've been down this road before: Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has taken action against auditors of self-managed
superannuation fund (SMSF).

Coupled with the evidence before the Royal Commission one thing is clear: ASIC's mandate is fundamentally flawed and a new model must be created ASAP, not ASIC.

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When Barnaby Joyce admits he was wrong, as he has done recently over his previous comments that a Royal Commission was appropriate to inquire into the management and practices of Australia's banks, it's obvious how things are going. It's starting to look as if the sector is going to get a huge shake-up - and the removal of many senior officers. One hopes they are replaced with competent bankers, not more recruits from consulting companies - or from the revolving door with government and quasi-government jobs.

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The story of Warderly International Holdings Ltd is strange. Formed in 2002, it floated almost immediately. In 2007, shares were suspended when Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission raised questions about the management of the listed company and, as was learned much later, allegations of insider trading.

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As if the crisis in retail isn't a sign that the global financial crisis, and the UK's part in it, isn't over, the news from manufacturing and other sectors of large-scale redundancies, non-renewal of contracts for term-staff and closures or restructuring of businesses in non-high street retail isn't enough, mailboxes are being spammed with one of the earliest signs of a financial crisis, threatening to ensure that recovery is a long way off. At the forefront is a spam promoting SAGA, the company that is supposedly the elderly's best friend.

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It's amazing: the old 419 scam still works enough for people to persist in using it. From mail in envelopes via, in some cases, telex and then fax and onto e-mail, they just keep on coming. This one purports to come from someone working at Barclays Bank.

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This morning, I received, in one of my corporate mailboxes, a spam which is disturbing on several levels, none of which are relevant to the core arguments in this piece so I've added the text in a footnote for readers' information.

What is relevant, and not disturbing, is that it demands payment to a specific bitcoin account.

This is it: 1JXuMq6sbL95XnrcDEsrZTCvvRjB52RCAD.

Governments and others are focussed on the person behind the account. There is another way, says Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Hardly a day goes by without a report of bad conduct by one of Australia's banks. It's not as if there are many of them and the result is that each of them is in the news for all the wrong reasons on an increasingly frequent basis. This time it's ANZ with a classic of charging fees but providing no service.

Really. How is this different from someone knocking on the door of an elderly couple, telling them there's a hole in their roof and saying "I'll repair it for a price of X" but collecting the money and doing nothing?

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If the domain name used to send a spam and the subject line are inconsistent, that's often a guide to the probability that a the spam is also a scam. If the subject matter of the content is unrelated to a domain name that indicates a connection to a specific subject, that is also an indicator. So digital@myrountrips.net writing about "Multiple revenue streams" and "The Most Profitable Digital Currency System in the World" ticks more than enough boxes. Then we are promised no-lose crypto-currency trading.

The fine might seem small at only AUD43,200 but insurance is all about trust and when car insurer RAA Insurance was investigated by ASIC, it was found to have misled customers in its advertising. Oddly, the case can be illustrated by reference to cricket and the Australian Grand Prix, both within the past few days.

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A correspondent asks "As a UK individual how do I report / alert the US authorities to the a craptocurrency used by employees and the Chairman of a group of companies with offices in St Louis, Missouri ?"

Here's the answer, and it explains differences between OFAC and FinCEN, etc. reports.

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On 19th March, the USA's Office of Foreign Assets Control, a division of the US Treasury, which publishes lists of persons sanctioned under trade and economic policies, under policies that are political including but not limited to national security plus those under the USA PATRIOT Act announced that it was to include, where it has it, cryptocurrency data relating to subjects. Just what are they planning and what will it mean for crypto-currency holders and exchanges and businesses such as online auctions and advertising platforms?

One would think that, after the revelation that more than GBP1,000 million had been collected by form fillers providing entirely unnecessary services for those claiming PPI refunds, the market would have died. Maybe you'd have thought that the action against those pretending to be official websites would have discouraged others from doing something similar. And, of course, there's law that spamming individuals is a crime. Welcome to Magnetise Media Ltd which says it's registered by the Claims Management Regulator and listed by the Ministry of Justice. Hopefully Trading Standards and the Information Commissioner have files, too.

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An indictment alleges accused "tricked homeowners into signing fraudulent deeds on their properties and then allegedly used the fraudulent deeds to extort money from homeowners, charge homeowners illegal fees to delay foreclosure and eviction actions and to steal some homes outright."

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