Beware! 500-index is an offshore broker! Your investment may be at risk.
RECOMMENDED FOREX BROKERS
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Open trading accounts with at least two brokers.
500-index is pretty much what you see and think the very first time you enter the website- a sloppy, unattractive, and seemingly unfinished broker. Now the question is whether this was done out of lack of care, professionalism, io if just the site was left unfinished. What ever the reason, one thing is for sure. And that is that no regulated broker would be allowed to offer forex trading in this state. So we are left with the questions: is 500-index a licensed company, and is this one worth the risk? Read the review to find out all about it.
Registering was incredibly easy and straightforward, asking only of us the basic credentials. However, after that we hit a brick wall. The broker required of us ID documents without which we could not continue on to the client area. Furthermore, there is no option to open a demo account. So unfortunately we are left with the website, a very limited source of information concerning everything, from payment info to trading conditions.
Another major issue was that there were no legal documents, from which to gather details. The lack of such crucial provisions is a clear sign that 500-index is more than just shady.
Unfortunately, the website is of no help to us here. There is a noticeable lack of trading information. So any spreads, trading assets, and even a leverage are out of the question.
English and Arabic are the only languages that are made available.
500-INDEX REGULATION AND SAFETY OF FUNDS
The FSC is the official market regulator in Bulgaria, a nation that is not so well known for forex, even if there are a stable amount of legit firms that operate there. As most regulatory agencies, so does the FSC have a list of licensed entities. Is it a surprise that 500-index is nowhere to be found?
Furthermore, the footer of the site reveals that 500-index is located in Cyprus, out of all places. One cannot be a broker there without being licensed by CySEC, which is one of the most popular and severe overseers in the world. We can say with confidence that 500-index is not at all overseen by CySEC.
The FAQ, which is in fact the only source of info that the website has, claims that the broker operates from Switzerland. This country is arguably the most strictly regulated for forex firms in the world, and a sloppy 500-index is not about to be added to the handful of regulated brokers there.
Finally, in the About Us page, the text explicitly says that 500-index is based in Germany, where BaFIN is the watchdog, one of Europe’s top. Needless to say, 500-index is not a part of BaFIN’s list of regulated entities.
All of these, plus the sheer look and feel of the website, lead us to conclude the only logical thing, and that is that 500-index is completely UNREGULATED, and a huge risk to any deposited funds. Plus the missing legal provisions means that there is no legal bind between user and broker, i.e 500-index can do whatever it wants with your personal info and deposit sums.
Traders should be trading with risk-free brokers, that hold licensed from renowned and austere agencies, like the FCA or CySec , which have made a name for themselves as some of the top regulators. Readers should be aware that both agencies have adapted very strict rules of conduct, and their licensing framework guarantees safety and security for all clientele. A good example of this is the segregation of accounts which assures that client money and broker money are kept in separate accounts. Furthermore, FCA/CySEC brokers participate in a financial reimbursement scheme that cover traders losses in case the broker becomes insolvent. The FCA provides up to 85 000 pounds per person, while CySEC guarantees up to 20 000 euros.
500-INDEX TRADING SOFTWARE
Let’s split this section in two.
First of all, the website offers no details on the existence of a trading software. There is literally nothing on 500-index having a platform.
And second; even if there was an advertised terminal, we would have no way to verify it, seeing our inability to register.
So we apologise to our readers, but this is all there is to say.
500-INDEX DEPOSIT/WITHDRAW METHODS AND FEES
According to the FAQ page, the minimum deposit is $500. Entrusting the FAQ page with this sensitive information, from a scammer broker none the least, is not about to happen. What ever the minimum funding requirement is, we don’t advice any depositing. Also as per the FAQ, users can deposit via bank transfer, WesternUnion, MoneyGram, Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum.
We were able to open an account in USD, while the other base currencies are EUR, GBP, and AUD. For a broker allegedly regulated by a Bulgarian watchdog, we find the lack of the Bulgarian lei rather exemplary of the firms illegitimate status.
Withdrawals, on the other hand, are, as though, not available. Really, there is no info on them at all. We assume that the client area, once reached, will have some sort of withdrawal area. Yet, the more time we spend with 500-index, the more this seems unlikely.
Our hands are tied here. There is nothing more to add.
As we mentioned, there are no legal documents. This is cause for concern. We won’t be including any provisions, however the lack of legal docs can be seen as one, because without such records, there is no way for the user to be kept in line with the broker’s rules. In other words, we urge all to never deposit in this one, nor share any sensitive information with it.
How does the scam work?
Users will be in the middle of a scam without even knowing it, that’s how efficient these scams are. Yet, clients will also be surprised that the most utilized scammer structure is laughably easy to grasp, making it predictable. We have dedicated the following section to the reveal of how the scam works.
The internet is filled with ads, it’s the fuel of the industry, and a big chunk of said advertisements are misleading and some are downright deceitful. The ads concerned with unregulated forex brokers are often very promising, and most of the times utilize completely false claims of immediate profit. Those tempted enough will be redirected to a robo-scam website that further guarantees profits. The only thing that separates the user from the unrealistic promises is a fast registration process that requires a phone number and an email address. After inputting this info unsuspecting users will start getting phone calls from illicit broker representatives, whose one and only job is to initialize the scheme by pushing a trader to make that first deposit of around $250. After that’s done, the senior representatives will be calling. These expert scammers are extremely good talkers, and will start working on you to start putting even more money in. They say that the more money invested, the higher the profit will be. At this point most traders start seeing the big picture, and will want to withdrawal their money and get out fast.
However, the scammers have anticipated this development, and are ready to counter any withdrawal request. Typically they find excuses for delaying the request in the legal documents that hold specific clauses for these purposes. The reasons are many. One thing to remember is that all illicit brokerage firms will deny the withdrawal request for as long as they can, because of the imposed time limit traders have for filling a chargeback. Once the crucial due date is not met, any chargeback requests will be denied.
What to do if scammed?
Those of you who deposited using VISA and MasterCard will be glad to know that both companies have extended their chargeback time span to 540 days, especially if the reason for it is an online scam.
Scammers will steal directly from a bank account, if the traders has provided crucial details, like banking password or security code. If it get down to this, be sure to either block the account or change the password.
Sometime victimized users will stumble upon the so called recovery agents that promises to magically reclaim all lost investments, for a fee that is. Needless to say, they will not get back any of the lost funds, and will basically scam you a second time.