SEC closes five more online lending companies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has ordered the immediate closure of five online lending operators that offer loans to the public without any authority or even corporate vehicle to do so.

In an order issued on Feb. 3, the SEC en banc ordered Tacoloan, VCash, 365 Cash, SwipeCash, and BootCash to immediately halt their lending, financing and related activities until they incorporated and obtained from the SEC their respective certificates. to be able to operate as a credit or financing company (CA).

The companies, their agents, representatives and promoters, and the owners and operators of their hosting sites, were further directed to cease offering and advertising their lending business via the Internet or any other media. , and to delete any related material. The SEC found that these five digital lenders did not register as a company. They also did not obtain certificate authorities from the company’s watchdog.

The Loan Companies Regulation Act of 2027 (Republic Act No. 9474) requires persons or entities operating as loan companies to register as companies and obtain necessary SEC authorization to operate.

The SEC thus stated that the issuance of a cease and desist order was warranted in such cases “not only to stop the unlawful act, but also to prevent the continued defrauding of the public who are brought by online loan operators to believe they are a legitimate business.

In addition to their illegal operations, the SEC has also received complaints about unfair debt collection practices by online lending operators.

“The Commission is required to strictly apply the provisions of the [LCRA]ensure that the public interest is at all times respected and that the public is protected against persons who engage in unauthorized or illegal lending activities,” the SEC said.

—Doris Dumlao-Abadilla INQ

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David A. Albanese