According to information obtained by the Telegraph, The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has dramatically increased its scrutiny of cryptocurrency companies as part of a broad effort to clean up the industry. In response to a Freedom of Information request, regulators revealed that they have investigated a total of 50 crypto-related companies, more than double the amount reported just six months ago.
The FCA is reportedly examining firms that it believes may have been engaged in unauthorized financial services. While the UK does not regulate cryptocurrencies, it has created a task force charged with monitoring the industry and its effect on the UK’s financial system. That task force is a joint effort from the FCA, Treasury, and the Bank of England.
One observer has suggested that further investigations are almost certain, as regulators face increasing pressure to protect investors. Moore Stephens partner Andrew Jacobs told the Telegraph:
“The huge sums lost as a result of cryptocurrency prices falling this year will have triggered a rash of complaints to the FCA.
Now that prices have collapsed, fraud is likely to be exposed, with greater pressure coming to bear on the FCA to ensure that this market can operate transparently and fairly.”