The FCA of the United Kingdom has ordered that all ATMs that operate with cryptocurrencies within the country stop their operations. All the companies in charge of the ATMs do not have the relevant permit, so they are committing a crime.
This Friday the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) of the United Kingdom released a statement to warn about the use of crypto ATMs within the country . The report explains that all these terminals are operating illegally within the country and, therefore, are committing a crime.
The FCA has contacted all UK ATM operators directly to tell them they must stop their service or face very large penalties . According to the regulatory authority, none of the companies offering crypto trading through these ATMs are registered as such. This means that these companies are not licensed to offer cryptographic services to UK citizens .
The notice by the FCA comes shortly after the court ruling against Gidiplus , a crypto ATM operator in the UK, was revealed. Gidiplus filed a claim with the High Court of Justice to challenge the FCA’s decision, which rejected its application for a license under the Money Laundering Regulations (MLR) regime.
The FCA had rejected Gidiplus’s request because its ATMs did not request enough personal information when carrying out operations for reduced values. According to the FCA , this practice could be used by malicious users to launder large amounts of money using the ” smurfing ” technique .
Smurfing consists of laundering large amounts of money in small amounts. The FCA rejected Gidiplus’ application because the company’s cashiers did not require the minimum personal information when making deposits of less than £250.
The High Court ruled in favor of the FCA, showing that Gidiplus had failed to show that it could operate in a way that complied with the MLR protocol. With this premise, the FCA forces the rest of the operators to demonstrate that if they comply with the MLR protocols if they want to continue operating within the country , but for now they must stop their machines. Currently, there are 82 crypto ATMs in the UK and the majority are located in the areas of: London, Manchester, Oxford and Birmingham.