Starling Bank users are no longer able to purchase crypto or receive transfers from crypto exchanges.
Starling Bank, a London-based digital challenger bank focusing on current and business account products, has reportedly banned crypto-related transactions.
According to the Starling Bank tweet shared in response to customers’ concerns, the bank stated that its customers will no longer be able to purchase cryptocurrencies or be able to receive transfers from crypto exchanges.
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It seems that the bank first distributed messages about prohibiting crypto-related transactions on their app.
Starling’s spokesperson commented on the matter, stating that cryptocurrencies are considered “high-risk” products and are “heavily used for criminal purposes.”
On top of that, the spokesperson added that the bank has been reviewing its crypto-related services for quite some time. The spokesperson noted that the bank has recently “tightened restrictions on inbound and outbound transactions by card and bank transfer.” Starling Bank representative added:
The innovative technology, and thinking, behind cryptocurrencies have great potential advantages. However, right now, they are high risk and heavily used for criminal purposes and, as such, we no longer support them.
Not everyone was happy about the bank making such a decision. One crypto enthusiast took to Twitter to share his disapproval, stating:
While it is understandable to block individual transactions that banks believe are outright fraud, banning legitimate transactions involving an entire industry is unacceptable.
The user, dubbed SovrynBTC, was annoyed that banks do not “meddle in other "high risk" activities,” like stock trading, gambling, or purchasing drugs.
It is worth noting that it is not the first time Starling has halted certain crypto services. In May 2021, the bank briefly suspended payments to crypto exchanges, stating that there are “high levels of suspected financial crime with payments to some cryptocurrency exchanges.”
At the beginning of November, another UK-based bank, Santander, planned to block its customers from making payments to crypto exchanges.