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In the latest development, banks were holding on transfers to cryptocurrency exchanges by suspending the payments. This move came amid the rising fear of financial crime opportunities for unruly.
Major banking institutions in the UK, including Barclays, Monzo, and Starling, blocked their users from transferring money to cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance and SwissBorg.
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In an interview with The Telegraph, Starling Bank’s spokesperson said, “This is a temporary measure that we’ve taken to protect customers. This is not just an issue for Starling but all banks. We apologise for the inconvenience that this has caused for some customers; we will be reversing this measure as we roll out additional checks specifically for payments to crypto exchanges.”
However, Starling Bank also said it will resume cryptocurrency exchange transfers on June 23 after an enhanced payment review process. On the other hand, there is no information in this regard from Monzo or Barclays.
Digital currency scam
The UK consumers have lost more than £60 million due to the social media investment scam in the past year. Around 50% or more such scams involved digital currencies, says the report.
Last week, Natwest also warned its customers about the digital currency scams, since it had received a record number of a report about fraud in the time between January and March 2021.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) also warned consumers investing in cryptocurrencies earlier this year.
“The FCA is aware that some firms are offering investments in crypto assets or lending or investments linked to crypto assets, that promise high returns. Investing in crypto assets, or investments and lending linked to them generally involves taking very high risks with investors’ money. If consumers invest in these types of products, they should be prepared to lose all their money.”
John Glen, City minister, on Tuesday, told Tory MP Philip Davies that a “significant number” of firms in the cryptocurrency sector have failed to implement appropriately robust anti-money laundering controls or to employ fit and proper personnel. As of last week, only five crypto assets businesses have received registration from the FCA since January 10, 2020.
The UK isn’t the only one
Well, the UK isn’t the only country cracking down on cryptocurrency. Recently, the Indian banks and card services have issued a warning about carrying a crypto transaction.
On the other hand, China imposed a fresh curb on cryptocurrencies banning banks and payment firms from providing services related to cryptocurrency transactions.