While the banking crisis in the USA continues, the conflict between fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies continues. The UK's financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), continues its crackdown on illegal cryptocurrency ATMs.
UK's FCA Continues Pressure on Unregistered Cryptocurrency ATMs
The regulator, together with local police, raided facilities in Exeter, Nottingham and Sheffield, saying that cash-to-crypto converters are illegal and pose a money laundering threat.
The FCA said it was inspecting sites in Exeter, Nottingham and Sheffield with district police.
The regulator said on Friday that devices that convert fiat currency to crypto are considered money laundering threats and none of them are registered with the FCA as required by law.
"Crypto ATMs operating without FCA registration are illegal," said Therese Chambers, FCA's Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Surveillance. "We will take action to stop illegal activities."
The FCA said it was reviewing the evidence from its audit, but did not specify what other action, if any, could be taken. The raids follow sanctions actions in Leeds and East London announced in March.
According to the CoinATMRadar website, there are 17 crypto ATMs in the UK, but the FCA says that none of the 40 or so registered crypto companies are allowed to offer the service.
The regulator also warns consumers of the risks associated with using unregistered crypto ATMs as they often charge high fees and offer little or no consumer protection.
In addition, the FCA emphasized that individuals operating unregistered crypto ATMs without proper licenses could face significant fines and even jail time.
*Not investment advice.