UK Advertising Regulator Upholds Complaints Against “It’s Time to Buy” Bitcoin Ad

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has asked Luno exchange to make it clear that investment in Bitcoin is volatile, subject to losses, and in an unregulated market.


  • The UK has banned an advertising campaign that says “it’s time to buy” bitcoin.
  • The nation’s advertising regulator cited the campaign as being irresponsible and misleading for banning it.

The campaign was run by cryptocurrency exchange Luno in February, which had its posters across the London Underground and London Bus networks featuring Bitcoin with the text “If you're seeing Bitcoin on the Underground, it's time to buy.”

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said on Wednesday that they received three complaints that said the ad failed to illustrate the risk of the investment as such was misleading and that it took advantage of consumers’ inexperience.

The regulator upheld the issues with the advertisement that it is a call to action to buy the cryptocurrency, an investment which it said was “complex, volatile, and could expose investors to losses” in contrast to the impression of simple and conventional given by the ad as such a breach of the Code.

ASA has ruled that the ads mustn’t appear again in the form complained about, and Luno has to make it “sufficiently clear” that investments in Bitcoin were variable and the market unregulated.

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