UK Banks Suspend Payments to Crypto Exchanges Due to “High Levels of Suspected Financial Crime”
Barclays, Starling, and Mozo are blocking their customers from transferring money to cryptocurrency platforms like Binance and Swiss Borg.
These banks are cracking down on transfers to crypto exchanges in recent weeks by suspending payments to the sector, reported local media.
Earlier this year, HSBC and other unmentioned banks had stopped processing cryptocurrency payments. Besides not allowing their users to make transfers between bank accounts and digital wallets, the banks also didn’t let their customers use credit cards to buy or sell BTC.
Online bank, Starling has now suspended all payments to crypto exchanges, citing “high levels of suspected financial crime with such payment.”
However, “This is a temporary measure that we’ve taken to protect customers,” said the bank’s spokesman. The added,
“This is not just an issue for Starling, but for all banks. We apologize 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.”
Barclays spokesman meanwhile denied having blocked customers from interacting with crypto platforms.
The users of these banks have taken to social media to complain about the crackdown. Another retail banking company NaWest recently warned its customers about crypto scams, saying it had received a record number of reports about fraud in the sector between January and March this year.
Amidst this, City minister John Glen told Tory MP Philip Davies that a “significant number” of firms in the sector have failed to implement appropriate robust anti-money laundering controls.
Last week, only five businesses dealing in cryptocurrencies had received registration from the FCA since January last year.