FCA restricts rebuildingsociety.com from approving crypto promotions
The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) imposed requirements on rebuildingsociety.com Ltd to restrict it from approving cryptoasset financial promotions.
The regulator has used its powers under section 55L of the Financial Services and Markets Act (FSMA) to impose these restrictions. The FCA can impose requirements on a firm in circumstances where it concludes that it is necessary to do so to advance one or more of the FCA’s operational objectives, which includes securing an appropriate degree of consumer protection.
- The firm must not approve the content of any financial promotion for a Qualifying Cryptoasset for communication by an unauthorised person.
- The firm must, by no later than 5pm on 11 October 2023, withdraw any existing approvals of Financial Promotions containing a Qualifying Cryptoasset.
- The firm must, by no later than 5pm on 11 October 2023, notify any client it has engaged or been engaged by to approve (for the purposes of section 21 of the Act) the content of any Financial Promotion containing a Qualifying Cryptoasset of the fact of the Requirements and that the firm is not permitted to approve the content of any Financial Promotion for a Qualifying Cryptoasset.
- The firm must, by no later than 5pm on 11 October 2023, withdraw any advertisements or equivalent promotion offering to approve the content of any Financial Promotion containing a Qualifying Cryptoasset for communication by an unauthorised person.
- The firm must, by no later than 5pm on 13 October 2023, confirm in writing to its designated contact at the Authority that it has taken all steps to comply with the Requirements.
Rebuildingsociety.com Ltd has the right to make representations to the FCA regarding the restrictions. They also have the right to refer the matter to the Upper Tribunal.
The financial promotions regime is designed to protect consumers from misleading and harmful promotions. Unregistered cryptoasset firms can only legally communicate financial promotions to UK consumers if those promotions are approved by an authorised firm.
If unregistered cryptoasset firms’ promotions cease to be approved by an authorised firm, they must cease promoting cryptoassets to UK consumers until such time as they can find an authorised firm to approve their financial promotions.
Consumers who have invested with an unregistered cryptoasset firm who has had its promotions approved by rebuildingsociety.com Ltd should still be allowed to receive communications about their existing assets that will allow them to withdraw, transfer or sell their existing assets.
However consumers will not be able to receive promotions from unregistered cryptoasset firms related to further investment activity.