Chinese regulators have ramped up a sweeping crackdown on online scams in the world’s largest internet market, as it warned that fraudsters have been creating a large number of counterfeit financial services apps to dupe consumers, reports the South China Morning Post.
Internet watchdog the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) said on Friday that it has removed 42,000 of these counterfeit apps since the start of this year, adding the illegal platforms to its fraud blacklist, according to a statement posted by the regulator on its official WeChat account. This blacklist now includes more than 3.8 million websites and 514,000 apps.
The regulator said scammers are behind a growing number of counterfeit finance apps that imitate widely known platforms like those of JD Finance, operated by JD.com’s fintech arm JD Technology, and Mashang Consumer Finance, one of the country’s largest online lenders to consumers. An estimated 5,677 fraudulent apps were found to mimic JD Finance, according to the CAC statement.