A “misleading” Bitcoin advert has been banned from London Underground and London buses.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld complaints against Luno Money’s advert which read “If you’re seeing Bitcoin on the Underground, it’s time to buy”.
The ASA said the ad gave the impression that Bitcoin investment was straightforward and accessible when it is in fact unregulated, complex and volatile.
Read more: Institutional investors turn to crypto
It said the advert “irresponsibly” suggested that engaging in Bitcoin investment through Luno was straightforward and easy, particularly given that the audience it addressed, the general public, were likely to be inexperienced in their understanding of cryptocurrencies.
The ASA said the general public would expect that the exchange of Bitcoin would be regulated, with legal protection in place for investment activities
In response, Luno Money said that the adverts would not appear again in the form complained about and their future adverts would feature an appropriate risk warning.
Read more: What the crypto boom tells us about P2P
“We considered the fact that Luno and the Bitcoin market were unregulated to be material information that consumers required in order to make informed decisions about Luno’s service, and should have been made clear in the ad,” the ASA said within its ruling.
“While we welcomed Luno’s assurance that their future ads would feature risk warnings to consumers, at the time the ad appeared it had not featured any risk warning making sufficiently clear to consumers that the value of Bitcoin could go down as well as up, or that the Bitcoin market was unregulated in the UK. We therefore concluded that the ad was misleading.”