Alibaba’s Taobao Prohibits Crypto, ICO Services in Latest Policy Update


Taobao, the online shopping site managed by the e-commerce giant Alibaba, has announced an updated list of goods and services prohibited from its platform, and it now includes those related to ICOs and cryptocurrencies.

As of Tuesday, the site has now formally banned individual stores providing services related to initial coin offerings (ICOs) on its platform.

Starting from April 17, the site will extend its existing self-regulatory ban on the sale of individual digital currencies to any service or product that comes from a blockchain technology, including crypto-pets.

Existing restrictions on the sale of cryptocurrency mining devices and mining tutorial services remains unchanged.

Citing the People’s Bank of China’s clampdown on ICO last September, Taobao announced that stores that violate the new rules would be punished.

Various services related to ICOs were observed to have stayed active on individual stores on Taobao following the PBoC’s ban last year, some of which deliberately helped ICO projects create white papers containing fake information.

When you search for the word “Whitepaper” in Chinese characters, you would be redirected to stores that offer white-paper copywriting services for ICO and blockchain fundraising activities. However, these stores have slightly disguised and rephrased the term they use as “I.CO” to avoid detection.

Taobao’s updated ruling on the ban for ICOs and blockchain related projects comes after recent bans on crypto-related ads by major social media platforms such as Google, Facebook and Twitter.


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