ASIC Crypto Priorities: Regulation, Disclosures And Education
In its latest corporate strategy report, the Australian Securities and Exchange Commission (ASIC) highlighted that it considers crypto scams as a top priority on its list of regulatory concerns.
“Another focus for us is scams involving crypto-assets and the harms these products pose more generally for investors,” the report also declares.
Crypto Regulations and Awareness
On August 28, ASIC announced its determination to focus on sectors within the economy that pose risks to Australians.
“ASIC will take further enforcement action to protect Australian consumers and small businesses in an environment where scams, digitally-enabled misconduct and predatory lending practices are increasingly prevalent.”
ASIC outlines a series of actions it intends to implement in order to tackle crypto scams within Australia.
Top of the list was crypto regulations, a similar priority for many countries at the moment, noting:
“Supporting the development of an effective regulatory framework focused on consumer protection and market integrity following the consultation by Treasury,” it states.
ASIC also notes that it will scrutinize crypto product disclosure statements. The regulator declares it will take action against those that provide misleading promotions of high-risk investments. It also intends to target firms which fail to disclose appropriate risks.
On August 17, reports reveal that a former Australian based crypto lender, Helio Lending, has been sentenced to a one-year conviction bond over its crypto-backed loans. Hello was offering the product without holding an Australian Credit License, despite claiming to hold one.
Crypto Scams In Australia Are On The Rise
ASIC also pointed out the importance of educating people about crypto. “Raising public awareness of the risks inherent in crypto-assets and decentralized finance (DeFi),” the report declares.
This comes amid a reported significant increase in the number of crypto-related scams impacting Australian citizens.
A recent report reveals that 3,910 Australians were victims of crypto scams in 2022, amounting to $221.3 million lost. This represents an increase of 162.4% from 2021.
Recently, major banks in Australia have reportedly been blocking payments to high-risk crypto exchanges.
On July 17, reports reveal that National Australia Bank (NAB) head of fraud, Chris Sheehan, declared the bank would be banning payments to several exchanges, in an effort to align with industry standards and regulations.
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