UK Digital Bank Under JPMorgan Restricts Customers from Crypto Purchases

Chase UK, the British brand of JPMorgan’s challenger bank, has implemented restrictions preventing its customers in the U.K. from buying crypto assets. In an announcement on Tuesday, the company stated that starting October 16, Chase UK customers would no longer be able to conduct crypto transactions using their debit cards or through outgoing bank transfers. “If customers attempt a crypto-related transaction, they will receive a notification of a declined transaction,” the bank mentioned in an email to its clients, justifying the move as a measure to safeguard customers’ money. As per the company’s explanation, the decision to enforce this restriction was motivated by the growing misuse of crypto assets by fraudsters to embezzle significant amounts of money. Chase UK referred to data from Action Fraud, the U.K.’s fraud reporting agency, revealing that consumer losses in the U.K. due to crypto fraud surged by over 40% in the past year, crossing £300 million for the first time. Highlighting the prevalence of crypto scams, the bank cited the Office for National Statistics, noting that crypto scams constituted more than 40% of all reported crimes in England and Wales last year.

Chase UK has followed the steps of other banks in the country, such as NatWest, HSBC, and Nationwide, which have also introduced limitations on their customers’ ability to purchase cryptocurrencies. NatWest imposed restrictions, allowing customers to transfer a maximum of £1,000 per day and £5,000 over a 30-day period to crypto exchanges, aiming to combat the surge in crypto-related fraud attempts. A Chase spokesperson emphasized their commitment to ensuring the safety and security of customers’ funds, stating that the decision to block purchases of crypto assets via Chase debit cards or transfers from Chase accounts to crypto sites was driven by the observed rise in crypto scams targeting U.K. consumers.

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