Apple, Google remove trading apps after ASIC investigation shows online fraud

Apple and Google have removed hundreds of trading apps from their online stores after an intervention by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) to crack down on online fraud, according to The Independent.

The ASIC — an independent Australian government body that acts as Australia's corporate regulator — says it conducted a sweeping review of mobile app stores focusing on those associated with so-called binary options trading. It says that the review highlighted over 330 apps that were offered by entities and individuals that appeared to be unlicensed. A total of 63% of those examined were offered by so-called binary option issuers and facilitated trading, according to the Independent.

Binary options are a way to trade price fluctuations in multiple global markets, but a trader needs to understand the risks and rewards of these often-misunderstood instruments. Binary options are different from traditional options. If traded, one will find these options have different payouts, fees and risks, not to mention an entirely different liquidity structure and investment process.  Binary options traded outside the U.S. are also typically structured differently than binaries available on U.S. exchanges.