Kim Kardashian has agreed to pay $1.26m to settle charges from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that she promoted a cryptocurrency on Instagram without disclosing she had been paid $250,000 to do so. The post has now been removed.
The SEC said that the reality TV star has agreed to comply with its ongoing investigation. The SEC said Kim Kardashian failed to disclose that she was being paid to publish a post on her Instagram handle about EMAX tokens, a crypto asset security offered by EthereumMax.
Kardashian’s Instagram post contained a link to the EthereumMax website, which provided instructions for potential investors to purchase EMAX tokens. Gurbir Grewal, director of the SEC’s division of enforcement, said that the federal securities laws clearly state that any celebrity or other individual promoting a crypto asset security must disclose the source, amount, and nature of compensation they received in exchange for the promotion. Kardashian has agreed not to promote any crypto asset securities for three years.
Kim Kardashian’s lawyer said that she has fully cooperated with the SEC from the very beginning and remains willing to do whatever is expected of her to assist the SEC in this matter. Kardashian wanted to get the matter behind her to avoid any protracted dispute. Her agreement with the SEC allows her to do the same and move forward with her many business pursuits.
Cryptocurrency is facing increasing attention from the US Congress. The latest bipartisan proposal on crypto came in August from Senators Debbie Stabenow, a Democrat from Michigan, and John Boozman, a Republican from Arkansas. It would hand the regulatory authority over Bitcoin and Ether to the Commodities Futures Trading Commission.