UK Ad Regulator Warn Over 50 Crypto Firms To Review Their Ads
The UK's advertising watchdog launch a warning to cryptocurrencies advertising companies to ensure they stick to the rules.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) – the UK’s independent regulator of advertising across all media – has issued a warning for violations to more than 50 companies advertising cryptocurrencies, asking to abide by ad rules or face bans and being reported to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
“We have issued an Enforcement Notice to over 50 companies which advertise cryptocurrencies, instructing them to review their ads and to ensure they understand and are complying with the rules so that consumers are treated fairly” said ASA in a statement. Transgressors have until May 2nd to stick to the rules or face being reported.
The ASA Enforcement Notice provides guidance about ads for cryptocurrencies, crypto exchanges and ads or promotions which otherwise involve the transfer, sale or supply of cryptocurrencies, targeted at UK consumers or that are targeted globally on behalf of UK-based advertisers. In particular, the guidance requires that advertisers:
- should clearly state that cryptocurrencies are unregulated in the UK and that the value of investments are variable and can go down;
- must not state or imply that investment decisions are trivial, simple, easy or suitable for anyone;
- must not imply a sense of urgency to buy or create a fear of missing out, or that investments are ‘low risk’.
“This is a ‘red alert’ priority issue for us and we’ve recently banned several crypto ads for misleading consumers and for being socially irresponsible. The ASA’s Compliance team will conduct follow-up monitoring and if problem ads persist after 2 May, we will take targeted enforcement action to ensure a level playing field” the Authority warned.
Advertising Standards Authority Chief Executive, Guy Parker, said: “Crypto has exploded in popularity in recent years. We’re concerned that people might be enticed by ads into investing money they can’t afford to lose, without understanding the risks. Working alongside the FCA, we’ll take strong action against any advertiser who fails to ensure that their ads are responsible.”