These days it seems that everybody is considering getting into the distributed ledger technology business causing the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the securities plaintiffs’ bar to take notice. Over the past several years the SEC has made certain public remarks about this new technology and brought a few enforcement actions. However, its recent investigative report addressing the initial coin offering (“ICO”) of a virtual organization (“21(a) Report”) marks a dramatic increase in the SEC’s focus that will have a profound impact on how this emerging market will be regulated. The report also signals an eventual uptick in enforcement activity and supplies plaintiffs’ attorneys with a new weapon for their complaints. As discussed in this article, the 21(a) Report therefore has far-reaching implications to the creation, offer, and sale of ICOs as well as the promotional and investment activities relating to them.
‘Enforcement 40’ for 2020
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