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FCA delays crypto cooling rules

FCA delays crypto cooling rules

The UK's Financial Conduct Authority says it will give some crypto firms more time to comply with upcoming marketing rules such as the 24-hour cooling off period for first time investors.

In June, the regulator set out a series of tough new rules for the marketing of crypto assets by companies - wherever they are based globally.

Most of the rules will come into effect as planned in October, meaning that all marketing must be ‘clear, fair and not misleading’, labelled with prominent risk warnings and must not inappropriately incentivise people to invest - for instance through "refer a friend" bonuses.

However, firms could be given until January to introduce features that "require greater technical development" such as the 24-hour cooling off period. Firms must first apply to get the extra time.

Lucy Castledine, director of consumer investments at the FCA, says: "As a proportionate regulator, we’re giving firms that apply a little more time to get the other reforms requiring technology and business change right."

But Castledine is also warning firms that they need to make sure they are ready for next month: "We are concerned by the failure of many overseas and unregulated crypto firms to engage with us on the new rules. Come 8 October, we will be taking action against firms illegally marketing to UK consumers."

Anyone who continues promoting crypto to UK customers past the October deadline without complying with the rules, may be committing a criminal offence punishable by an unlimited fine and up to two years imprisonment.

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