AFL partner Crypto.com charged for ‘deceptive advertising’ in UK

Key Takeaways:

  • Crypto.com has come under fire for being irresponsible, deceptive, and violating UK advertising laws.
  • Due to UK ASA decisions, Australian marketing for Crypto.com may come under closer scrutiny.

Crypto.com, a cryptocurrency exchange that collaborates with the AFL, has come under fire for acting “misleadingly” and “irresponsibly.” According to the Guardian report, the exchange has regularly broken UK advertising regulations.

The UK Advertising Standards Authority’s (ASA) decisions may lead to further scrutiny of Crypto.com’s Australian marketing. In January 2022, the AFL and the Singapore-based exchange agreed to work together for five years. After that, Crypto.com was promoted in AFL stadiums.

A local advertisement for Crypto.com, according to the ASA’s December report, “failed to highlight the risk of investing in non-fungible tokens.” Further investigation revealed that the advertisement omitted to mention that there would be fees.

The verdict was contested by Crypto.com, which argued that including fees in the advertisement was superfluous and would “simply confuse consumers.” The agency upheld rulings on two additional adverts from earlier in 2022 that were accused of preying on consumers’ “inexperience or credulity.” One of them stated:

“Buy bitcoin with credit card instantly,” which, according to the regulator, took advantage of consumers’ inexperience and credulity by failing to make clear that tax could be paid on cryptocurrency profits and by irresponsibly encouraging investing in cryptocurrency on a credit card.”

Another claim that clients might “earn up to 8.5 percent” was found false by the ASA. This occurred because it needed to be clarified how the earning estimate was calculated.

Crypto.com informed the regulator that these adverts had been taken down as soon as issues were brought to light and that its oversight process had been improved. If any of these adverts ran in the Australian market is still being determined.

According to a Crypto.com spokeswoman, the organization is trusted by more than 70 million customers worldwide and is the leader in the market for regulatory compliance, security, and privacy certifications.

Crypto.com and the AFL agreed to a five-year partnership in January 2022 to make Crypto.com the event’s official cryptocurrency exchange. A naming rights arrangement for the “Crypto.com AFL Score Review” and promotions surrounding AFL venues benefit the exchange.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) may examine Crypto.com promotions more closely as a result of the ASA judgments, according to The Guardian. The cooperation between Crypto.com and the AFL, in the opinion of cryptocurrency specialist Dr. Paul Mazzola, poses a “reputational risk for the sports code.”

A Crypto.com NFT commercial first emerged on social media in July 2022. Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are specific tokens affixed to tangible assets on the blockchain. Because the commercial neglected to emphasize the risk connected with investing in NFTs and failed to make it clear that fees would be incurred, the ASA filed a complaint.

Later, the ASA outlawed two of the company’s advertising for being irresponsible and dishonest. These advertisements should have clarified that bitcoin investments aren’t regulated in the United Kingdom and instead played on consumers’ inexperience or naivety.

On multiple times, ASA and Crypto.com have been at odds. In December 2022, ASA recently brought up a complaint regarding a Crypto.com Facebook advertisement and ruled that it should display again in its current form.

Deep Dalal
Deep Dalal

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