The FCA has used its powers to inspect several sites in East London suspected of hosting illegally operating crypto ATMs, as it continues its crackdown on the illicit sector.
In a joint operation with the Metropolitan Police, the FCA inspected several sites, using its enforcement powers.
Mark Steward, Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight at the FCA, said:
'Crypto ATMs operating without FCA registration are illegal and, as today shows, we will take action to stop this.
'This operation, alongside last month’s action in Leeds, sends a clear message that we will continue to identify and disrupt unregistered crypto businesses in the UK.
'Crypto products are not currently regulated and they are high risk. You should be prepared to lose all your money if you invest in them.'
Crypto ATMs allow people to buy or convert money into cryptoassets. There are currently no crypto ATM operators registered with the FCA, which they must be to operate legally.
The FCA is currently working with the National Economic Crime Centre to plan and coordinate action with law enforcement partners against operators of illegal crypto ATMs. This follows similar activity in Leeds, where the FCA inspected several sites suspected of hosting unregistered crypto ATMs, alongside West Yorkshire Police.
The FCA will review evidence gathered during these visits and consider taking further action where necessary.
Notes to editors
- This action follows the FCA’s inspection of several sites in Leeds that were suspected of hosting unregistered crypto ATMs.
- The FCA regularly warns consumers that cryptoassets are unregulated and high-risk which means people are very unlikely to have any protection if things go wrong.
- Cryptoasset exchange providers, which includes Crypto ATM operators, in the UK must be registered with the FCA and comply with the UK Money Laundering Regulations. This includes operators of crypto ATMs.
- The FCA carried out these visits using investigative powers under the Money Laundering Regulations 2017.
- The FCA has previously warned operators of crypto ATMs in the UK to shut their machines down or face enforcement action.
- The FCA publishes a list of business that it suspects are operating without our authorisation.
- Find out more information about the FCA.