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UK bank TSB cracks down on crypto-related cybercrime

According to a report by UK newspaper Telegraph published on June 19, Trustee Savings Bank (TSB) is preparing to prohibit more than 5.4 million customers from buying cryptocurrencies to protect them from the ‘excessively high’ fraud rates on cryptocurrency trading platforms starting this week.

TSB is the latest UK-based bank to crack down on cybercrimes related to crypto following Monzo Bank, Starling Bank and Barclays Plc.

According to The Times UK, TSB is set to block any transfer of cash to crypto-trading platforms such as Kraken and Binance after 849 TSB users reported losing money to a scam that occurred between March 15 to April 15 in the latter platform.

After the incident, TSB declared that the platforms have a ‘low security standard’ and are therefore vulnerable to fraudulent activities.

In a tweet posted on June 15, TSB also warned investors against cryptocurrency through a short video clip that says ‘crypto won’t always take you to the moon’ with the hashtag #ThinkTwiceThinkFraud. Along with the short clip, TSB advised its users to be extra vigilant when it comes to people who claim to be crypto investment advisors.

In the report by The Times UK, TSB even stated that the aforementioned exchange platforms fail to create a safer environment for investors and ‘hardly helps’ regardless of all the bank’s efforts to cooperate.

Binance refuted the claims and said in a Times report that ‘Binance is very serious about its responsibility to protect users from scams. When we are made aware of these claims, we immediately take action and have an excellent record of working with law enforcement agencies.’

Kraken also responded to the accusation through an interview with The Sunday Times on June 19. The exchange’s compliance officer Steven Christie stated that Kraken responded to well over 1,000 different requests from the law enforcement agencies in 2020 alone, proving that they operate in full compliance with the authority.

This move by TSB came just short of a few days after the UK regulatory Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) stated on their website last June 3 that most people who invest in crypto do not pay attention to the warnings and advice regarding their investment.

According to the research conducted by FCA on June 17, the awareness for cryptocurrency increased but only one out of ten investors are aware of the various regulatory warnings about crypto investment.

For all things crypto, check out Cryptoshimbun and keep up with the latest events in the crypto sphere here.

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