Chase UK bans crypto payments in fraud crackdown

Chase crypto Image credit: mundissima / Shutterstock

Chase UK will ban payments related to crypto assets next month as the bank looks to crackdown on “fraudsters”.

Announced through an email sent to customers today, the British wing of the JP Morgan-owned bank said it was “changing the types of payments” users can make.

The announcement said that from 16 October 2023, the bank will decline payments that it suspects are “related to crypto assets”.

Chase UK said the decision was made because “fraudsters are increasingly using crypto assets to steal large sums of money from people”.

It added: “if you’d still like to invest in crypto assets, you can try using a different bank”.

The crypto purge at Chase UK follows a similar ban on the alternative currency last year from Starling Bank.

The challenger bank announced last November it would no longer support crypto transactions as part of its financial crime review. A spokesperson for Starling said at the time that cryptoassets are “heavily used for criminal purposes and, as such, we no longer support them”.

The UK’s financial watchdog has repeatedly warned consumers of the risks of digital currency as part of its own attempts to curb financial crime.

Last month, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) warned businesses facilitating crypto transactions that they must comply with new transparency regulations requiring firms to verify and share information on crypto asset transfers.

Last April, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak – then serving as Boris Johnson’s chancellor – announced his ambition to make the UK a “global cryptoasset hub”, with a number of crypto projects said to be in the pipeline.

These included an NFT to be developed by the Royal Mint, which has since been scrapped, and the introduction of a Bank of England-operated stablecoin, which has been delayed due to “concern about privacy”.