National Australia Bank joins boycott of crypto exchanges, cites ‘fraud’

Another major bank in Australia said it would block certain cryptocurrency platforms, citing the high level of fraud risk in the industry.

On July 17, the National Australia Bank (NAB) announced a new set of measures to protect customers from fraud as part of a “bank-wide fraud strategy”.

As well as stopping millions of payments between March and July 2023, NAB will also introduce blocks on “some cryptocurrency platforms” to help protect customers from fraud.

NAB did not specify the name of the cryptocurrency exchange that is expected to face a block from the bank. NAB’s executive for group fraud and investigations, Chris Sheehan mentioned only that the new block would affect “high risk” platforms where “fraud is more prevalent”.

Sheehan says:

“These scammers are part of a transnational organized crime group. Increasingly, we are seeing them using cryptocurrency platforms to send stolen funds quickly and often overseas.”

According to local reports, Sheehan hinted that the NAB crypto block could impact crypto exchange Binance. “Our approach will be consistent with the rest of the industry,” the executive said. Over the last few months, other major Australian banks, including Westpac and Commonwealth Bank, have also reportedly blocked payments to Binance.

NAB and Binance did not immediately respond to Cointelegraph’s request for comment. This article will be updated waiting for new information.

Related: Binance Australia offices reportedly raided by local regulators

In its announcement, NAB continued to repeat the growing narrative of local banks, alleging that nearly 50% of fraudulent funds reported in Australia are crypto-related.

“More broadly, cryptocurrency fraud is one of the fastest growing security threats, with Australians losing more than $221 million last year,” the NBA said in a statement. The authorities also argue that 40% of Australians are “very willing” for slower payments if they are “better protected from scammers.”

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