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The chairman of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission called cryptocurrencies excessively volatile assets with a high level of risk.
Following the recent announcement by the MinistryAustralian Finance on strengthening oversight of cryptocurrencies, ASIC head Joseph Longo noted that one of the regulator’s key tasks is to warn the public about the risks associated with cryptoassets. According to him, the popularity of cryptocurrencies among young people has increased sharply due to attractive advertising and promises of high profits.
According to ASIC research, 44% of investorsown digital assets, and 25% invested only in cryptocurrencies. However, in recent months, the capitalization of the digital asset market has decreased by approximately $2 trillion, and this greatly alarms the regulator.
“My job is not to providesupport for cryptocurrencies, but to protect consumers and ensure compliance with laws. Investing in crypto assets is a very risky activity that does not bring a stable income. The industry will soon be regulated, but people should still exercise extreme caution,” Longo told a meeting of the Australian Economic Development Committee in Melbourne.
Joseph Longo noted that investing in Bitcoinshould not be confused with blockchain technology, which can be used legally and has the potential to actually improve certain areas of human activity. But cryptocurrencies are not subject to government control due to their decentralized nature, which attracts attackers. The ASIC chairman added that despite the agency's attempts to thwart crypto fraudsters who are using increasingly sophisticated methods, playing cat and mouse with the authorities.
“In society there will always bescammers and criminals. However, with the advent of new technologies, they easily crossed the boundaries and began to actively operate in the digital space,” says Longo.
In April, the Australian regulator warnedabout responsibility for the promotion of cryptocurrency projects, which the laws of the country classify as financial products. Failure to comply can result in multimillion-dollar fines and prison sentences.