A report published by LendEDU this week reveals that there has been a dramatic increase in the number of digital currency-related complaints to the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB. In 2016, there were a total of seven such complaints filed with the Bureau. This year, experts expect that number to rise to roughly 425.
CNBC quoted LendEDU content marketing analyst Jeff Gitlen, who provided more details explaining the report’s finding:
"In 2017, virtual currency transactions account for 0.0019 percent of the total complaints received by the CFPB. The CFPB is on pace to receive 425 complaints in 2017, up 5,971 percent from the seven complaints received in 2016."
While that increase in complaints might seem dramatic, it is important to maintain perspective. As CNBC notes, the LendEDU report looked at a total of 145,948 complaints filed with the CFPB this year. Those complaints involved some 2,731 different companies, and issues ranging from money transfers to debt collections and other personal finance concerns.
The rise in complaints has also coincided with a dramatic increase in public interest in Bitcoin and other digital currencies, as some leading cryptocurrencies have seen prices skyrocket in 2017. As new investors have entered the markets, exchanges like Coinbase have struggled to keep pace with rising customer service demands. If present trends continue and digital currencies continue their slow march toward mainstream acceptance, more complaints are a virtual certainty.