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Crypto exchanges warn UK users of enhanced regulations, mandate risk assessments


Cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase, Crypto.com, and Gemini warn users in the U.K. about new requirements related to risk assessments and investment questionnaires, aimed at assessing their financial literacy. This comes in anticipation of strict regulations on advertising digital asset products in the country. 

Users have been informed that starting Monday, January 8, 2024, they must complete a declaration specifying their investor profile and respond to a questionnaire covering various aspects of financial services and regulation. Failure to complete these tasks successfully will result in a restriction on trading activities. 

These changes align with the Financial Services and Markets Act in the U.K., subjecting crypto firms to the same rules as traditional financial services. Coinbase and Crypto.com noted that these adjustments are made to adhere to investor protection standards and ensure users have the necessary knowledge for informed investment decisions, demonstrating their commitment to collaboration with local regulators.

Crypto popularity

Cryptocurrency has experienced a surge in popularity over the past decade, driven by several key factors. One pivotal aspect is the concept of decentralisation, as cryptocurrencies operate on blockchain technology, providing transparency and security without the need for traditional intermediaries. 

This decentralised nature attracts individuals seeking financial independence and control over their assets. Blockchain technology itself, with its distributed and tamper-resistant ledger, offers features like transparency and immutability, making it appealing for applications beyond cryptocurrencies, such as smart contracts and decentralised finance (DeFi).

Financial inclusion is another driving force behind the popularity of cryptocurrencies. They offer an avenue for the unbanked and underbanked populations to access financial services, enabling them to send and receive money, access loans, and participate in global financial markets. 

The allure of speculation and investment opportunities has also played a significant role. Cryptocurrencies, particularly Bitcoin and other altcoins, have become a favoured asset class for investors seeking high returns in a dynamic market.

Institutional adoption has added further legitimacy to the crypto space, with prominent investors, hedge funds, and publicly traded companies entering the market. High-profile endorsements and institutional involvement have boosted confidence among investors. 

Cryptocurrencies offer a solution for fast and cost-effective cross-border transactions, making them valuable for international remittances. The rise of decentralised finance (DeFi) platforms has recreated and innovated traditional financial services in a decentralised manner, providing users with more accessible and inclusive financial opportunities. Additionally, the advent of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), unique digital assets representing ownership, has created new possibilities for artists, creators, and collectors.

Crypto betting scene in the UK

Using technological advancements, crypto betting has emerged as a trend, employing digital currencies like Bitcoin for online betting and gambling. This practice has gained traction, including in the UK, where the crypto betting scene is thriving. 

The use of digital currencies provides advantages, such as enhanced privacy and anonymity through transactions conducted with pseudonymous addresses. This dynamic intersection of cryptocurrency and betting reflects the growing interest in innovative financial solutions and entertainment platforms in the UK market.

The latest crypto updates from Sportsbet reflect the ongoing evolution of this landscape, where cryptocurrency betting platforms use blockchain for secure and transparent transactions, effectively mitigating fraud risks. 

However, the UK government has rejected proposals to regulate cryptocurrencies like gambling, emphasising that its existing regulatory framework is better suited to address the risks associated with events, such as the collapse of the crypto exchange FTX. 

The government disagrees with the House of Commons Treasury Committee’s concerns about treating the crypto sector too softly, suggesting that implementing gambling regulation alone would not effectively address the specific risk factors involved in crypto trading and investment. It highlights the need for a comprehensive approach aligned with global standards to avoid pushing the crypto industry offshore. 

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak also positioned the UK as a crypto hub, while acknowledging concerns about the pace of rulemaking compared to other jurisdictions like the European Union.