Regardless of the crypto market condition, regulators have continued to clamp down on several sectors in the crypto industry. Earlier today, the UK financial watchdog, proceeded in taking legal action against unregulated crypto ATMs in the city of London.
Crypto ATMs are one of the developing technologies the cryptocurrency industry has birthed over the past years. It is a stand-alone machine that allows users to buy and sell crypto assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum in exchange for cash, and now regulators are coming for it.
UK FCA Crackdown On Crypto ATMs
While the use of crypto ATMs has gained traction over the past years, the FCA has seen it as a threat as long as it is not regulated or registered under any legal force. According to Mark Steward, Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight at the FCA in a press release published earlier today, “Crypto ATMs operating without FCA registration is illegal” and “we [FCA] will take action to stop this.”
The FCA has since been on a crackdown spree on Crypto ATMs in London. Last month, the regulatory body issued several warnings to unregistered crypto ATM providers in the UK region, ordering them to cease all operations immediately. The FCA also added that legal proceedings shall be taken against providers who fail to comply with its warnings.
Notably, the FCA believes unregistered crypto ATMs are “high risk” and could be therefore advantageous to illicit activities such as money laundering. The FCA noted it will only continue to use its “powers to inspect several sites in East London suspected of hosting illegally operating crypto ATMs.”
Furthermore, the FCA stated it is currently working with the “National Economic Crime Centre to plan and coordinate action with law enforcement partners against operators of illegal crypto ATMs.” In addition, it is also in a “joint operation with the Metropolitan Police” to inspect several sites, using its “enforcement powers.”
FCA Regulates Crypto Firms
Just as the crypto industry has continued to grow rapidly in adoption, several regulators including the FCA have tried to be abreast of every development in the industry. Earlier this year, the FCA targeted the regulation of crypto firms in the United Kingdom requiring them to seek regulatory approval.
As reported by Bitcoinist, out of the 300 crypto firms that applied for regulatory approval, the FCA cleared just 41 and rejected the rest, directing them to law enforcement agencies.
Meanwhile, the global crypto market has continued to move in a downward trend. Over the past 24 hours, the global crypto market capitalization has lost nearly $10 billion, down by 1.1%. Large crypto assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum have also continued to show bearish moves down by 1.3 and 0.4% respectively in the past 24 hours.
Featured image from Unsplash, Chart from TradingView