27th September 2023 – (London) Banking giant Chase has announced its decision to prohibit crypto-linked payments for its UK clients, effective from October 16. In an email sent to customers, the bank stated that it would decline any payments associated with cryptocurrency assets, urging customers to explore alternative banking options or providers if they wish to invest in crypto.
The move by Chase reflects a broader trend within the U.K. financial industry, where credit institutions have historically restricted or blocked customer access to cryptocurrencies. The country’s financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), recently revealed that it had facilitated discussions between banks and crypto firms due to banks’ reluctance to offer services to the crypto industry.
The email sent by Chase, which CoinDesk had the opportunity to review, explained that the ban on crypto payments was motivated by the increasing use of cryptocurrency assets by fraudsters to carry out substantial monetary theft. Other UK banks have previously implemented similar restrictions, citing the same concern.
A spokesperson for Chase UK emphasized the bank’s commitment to safeguarding customers’ funds and cited the rise in crypto scams targeting UK consumers as a key factor in the decision. The spokesperson stated, “We’re committed to helping keep our customers’ money safe and secure. We’ve seen an increase in the number of crypto scams targeting U.K. consumers, so we have taken the decision to prevent the purchase of crypto assets on a Chase debit card or by transferring money to a crypto site from a Chase account.”