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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

FDIC issues advisory on crypto companies’ deposit insurance claims

Bank Regulatory FDIC Cryptocurrency Deposit Insurance Digital Assets Third-Party Risk Management Nonbank

On July 29, the FDIC announced an advisory addressing certain misrepresentations about FDIC deposit insurance made by some crypto companies. The advisory, among other things, reminded insured banks that they must be aware of how FDIC insurance operates as well as the need to assess, manage, and control risks arising from third-party relationships, including those with crypto companies. The advisory noted that recently “some crypto companies have suspended withdrawals or halted operations," and that in certain cases, "these companies have represented to their customers that their products are eligible for FDIC deposit insurance coverage, which may lead customers to believe, mistakenly, that their money or investments are safe.” In dealing with crypto companies, the agency cautioned that “FDIC-insured banks should confirm and monitor that these companies do not misrepresent the availability of deposit insurance.” The FDIC also issued a Fact Sheet reminding the public that the FDIC only insures deposits held in insured banks and savings associations and only in the event of an insured bank’s failure. The FDIC does not insure assets issued by non-bank entities, such as crypto companies.

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