Saturday, July 20, 2024

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the United Kingdom is intensifying its efforts to close down all unlawfully operating bitcoin ATMs across the country. After conducting further inspections in recent months, the regulatory body has pledged to persistently take action against operators of unregistered crypto teller machines.

Financial Watchdog Closes Numerous Crypto ATMs in the UK This Year

The UK’s financial regulator revealed on Tuesday that it has inspected an additional 18 sites suspected of running automated teller machines (ATMs) that support cryptocurrencies and are operating illegally within the country.

Between May and June, the FCA conducted these checks in collaboration with representatives from the South West Regional Organized Crime Unit, Bedfordshire Police, Hertfordshire Police, and the Metropolitan Police.

The FCA highlighted that these inspections are an extension of their previous visits to several locations in the UK, including East London, Leeds, Exeter, Sheffield, and Nottingham, all suspected of hosting unregistered crypto ATMs.

The joint inspections with other law enforcement agencies form part of the FCA’s ongoing crackdown on what they perceive to be an illicit sector. Since the start of 2023, the FCA has visited a total of 34 locations and disrupted the operations of 26 crypto ATMs operating unlawfully.

FCA Pledges to Take Further Action Against Unregistered Crypto ATM Operators

Steve Smart, the FCA’s joint executive director of enforcement and market oversight, warned, “Using a crypto ATM in the UK means using a machine that operates illegally, and you may be unknowingly handing your money over to criminals.”

Smart emphasized that users would not be protected if something goes awry and could risk losing their funds, as it is unlikely they would be able to contact the ATM operator to resolve any issues. He further stated, “We will continue to caution the public and take appropriate enforcement action against unregistered crypto ATM operators.”

The FCA reiterated its regular advisory to consumers that crypto assets are unregulated and high-risk. It also stressed that crypto exchange providers in the UK, including ATM operators, are obligated to register with the FCA and comply with the country’s anti-money laundering regulations.

Crypto ATMs have served as a gateway into the world of cryptocurrencies. However, according to a November report, the number of new machines installed in 2022 was three times lower than the previous year, reflecting a challenging period for the industry.

In April of this year, data from the Coin ATM Radar website indicated that global bitcoin ATM numbers had declined by nearly 14% since December 2022, with over 3,600 crypto machines going offline in March 2023 alone.

Share your thoughts on whether you believe the FCA will shut down all crypto ATMs in the UK in the comments section below.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about crypto ATMs

Will the FCA shut down all crypto ATMs in the UK?

The FCA is taking action against illegally operating crypto ATMs in the UK. They have conducted inspections and disrupted the operations of several unregistered ATMs. While their crackdown continues, it remains to be seen if all crypto ATMs will be shut down.

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DigitalNomad2023 July 12, 2023 - 3:51 pm

i’m not surprised that crypto atm numbers have declined. the industry has faced so many challenges recently. but hey, that’s just a temporary setback. crypto is here to stay, and it will bounce back stronger than ever!

CryptoEnthusiast87 July 12, 2023 - 6:48 pm

i think the fca should totally shut down all the crypto atms in the uk! they’re just breeding grounds for criminals! they need to take serious actions to protect the people and their money!

BlockchainFanatic July 12, 2023 - 8:03 pm

it’s great to see the fca cracking down on illegal activities in the crypto atm space. we need regulations to ensure the safety of users and prevent money laundering. this will help legitimize the industry and protect investors.

CryptoNewbie1 July 12, 2023 - 9:38 pm

i didn’t even know that crypto atms could be illegal. thanks to the fca for raising awareness. it’s important to be cautious and do our research before using any crypto services. better safe than sorry!

TechGeek92 July 13, 2023 - 1:19 am

the collaboration between the fca and law enforcement agencies is crucial in combating crypto-related crimes. it’s a step in the right direction towards creating a safer and more regulated environment for the crypto industry.

InvestorGuru July 13, 2023 - 2:41 am

the FCA’s warnings about the risks of crypto assets are important. people need to understand that investing in cryptocurrencies comes with its own set of challenges. education and awareness are key to making informed decisions in this space.

CryptoTrader25 July 13, 2023 - 3:17 am

shutting down all crypto atms seems like an extreme measure. there are legitimate businesses operating in this space, and they’ll be negatively impacted by this crackdown. the focus should be on identifying and penalizing the actual illegal operators.

BitcoinLover123 July 13, 2023 - 6:25 am

omg, this crackdown on crypto atms is such a buzzkill! i mean, they’re making it so hard for us to access crypto. can’t they just let us have some fun and take our own risks? it’s our money, after all!


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