Santander Bank UK is banning customers from making payments to crypto exchanges and sending money into cryptocurrency. The bank is also restricting customers from buying and selling crypto assets. This move is meant to protect its customers and prevent them from being scammed.
As of November 15, Santander will only allow its customers to send 1,000GBP to crypto exchanges per transaction, not withdrawals. However, the bank says that customers will still be able to receive funds from cryptocurrency exchanges. Yet, the bank is planning to impose stricter regulations for cryptocurrency exchanges in the near future.
The bank’s crypto roadmap has not been released yet, so details are unclear. Previously, the bank banned Binance, a popular cryptocurrency exchange platform. However, this decision was reversed.
The ban comes as a response to recent warnings from regulators about the risks of cryptocurrency fraud. In light of the recent spike in cryptocurrency fraud, Santander UK decided to limit customer cryptocurrency transactions. Customers can only send up to 1,000GBP to crypto exchanges in any one transaction, and they can only transfer up to 3,000GBP per rolling 30-day period.
The decision is aimed at protecting customers from scammers, but no firm date has been set. While the ban will be effective in 2023, it will be temporary. In the meantime, Santander will limit payments to crypto exchanges using its Faster Payments Service and online banking. However, this will not hinder customers’ ability to make withdrawals.
As the Financial Conduct Authority regulates cryptocurrency, more banks are preventing payments to these platforms. A recent report revealed a 42% increase in investment scams. Fraudsters often pose as investment advisers and trick their victims into sending money into crypto e-wallets. Unfortunately, these e-wallets can disappear without a trace. Because of this, many high street banks have already banned payments to these exchanges.
Santander is not alone
Another bank that is restricting payments to crypto exchanges is the NatWest Group. The group, which includes Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest, have been restricting payments to cryptocurrency companies since the announcement was made by the FCA. Meanwhile, Tesco Bank has also implemented a block on credit card payments to crypto exchanges. However, this ban does not apply to payments made with debit cards or via bank transfers.
In December 2021, Santander Bank reportedly blocked payments to Binance, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. The Financial Conduct Authority warned that the bank should not block these transactions. Santander Bank is the sixth largest bank in the UK with EUR287 billion in assets.
Jay Speakman is a technology writer based in San Francisco, California. He writes on the topics of blockchain, cryptocurrency, DeFi and other disruptive technologies. Clients include Avalanche, Be[in]Crypto, Trust Machines and several blogs devoted to blockchain gaming. He will not rest until fiat currency is defeated.