FCA Could Regulate UK Crypto Adverts

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  • The UK’s financial regulator the FCA could soon have more control over cryptocurrency adverts in the country
  • The UK Treasury wants to make it more difficult for unauthorized companies to advertise to UK citizens
  • The change in rules would make unauthorized financial companies jump through more hoops to advertise their products

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) could be given powers to ban cryptocurrency adverts by the British government’s Treasury department. Currently, adverts for crypto assets are unregulated in the UK, leading to citizens losing money in scams, but the government hopes that increasing FCA oversight will help remove such adverts before they can cause damage.

FCA Could Offer More of a Safeguard

In a proposal issued yesterday, HM Treasury suggested increasing the oversight of financial promotions issued by unauthorized firms as well as bringing the promotion of certain types of cryptocurrencies under FCA regulation for the first time. Under present regulations, if an unauthorized firm wants to promote a financial product, that promotion must be approved by an authorized financial firm, although there are few stipulations on the types of firms that can do this.

With the sheer quantity and variety of financial products being offered on the market today however, in particular with the growth of cryptocurrencies in recent years, the British government believes that this no longer provides a strong enough safeguard. Under the new proposals, authorized firms would have to obtain FCA consent in order to approve the financial promotions of these unauthorized firms. This would allow the FCA to have better oversight of unauthorized firms which would help ensure such promotions are “clear, fair, and not misleading.”

Celebrity Bitcoin Scams on the Rise in the UK

The number of British cryptocurrency scam victims has grown as the popularity of cryptocurrencies has grown, with Bitcoin scams featuring celebrities becoming more and more widespread and attracting more victims. Therefore, if increased FCA oversight can help stop these scammers from conning people into handing over their Bitcoin then it can only be a good thing.

The proposal, which has in fact been split into two, will now go through a consultation process from July 20 until October 25.