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India Blocks Access to Foreign Crypto Platforms


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India cracks down on foreign crypto platforms like Binance, blocking access to curb money laundering risks, causing a surge in domestic registrations.

My brother and his friends generally discuss crypto currency and I feel lost, but I want to invest in it too. With all this buzz about cryptocurrency, I'm feeling torn. On one hand, I hear about India blocking access to foreign cryptocurrency platforms like Binance, and on the other, there's news about a surge in registrations on domestic exchanges. I was thinking of investing, but now I'm not sure.

Should I still consider putting my money into cryptocurrency, especially with these recent developments? What does it mean for someone like me who's just dipping her toes into the crypto world? I'm worried about the risks and the confusion around it all.

Swati Paranjpe (Pune)

Dear Swati,

Understandably, recent news might have left you feeling uncertain. The situation is indeed changing, and it's wise to approach cryptocurrency investments cautiously.

India has taken a significant step by blocking access to web platforms of foreign cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance, Kucoin, and OKX, along with virtual digital asset service providers. This move, influenced by the Finance Ministry’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), aims to curb potential money laundering activities associated with these platforms. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology has also instructed Apple to remove offshore cryptocurrency apps from its store.

The government's actions, prompted by reports and show-cause notices from the FIU, indicate that these platforms were operating in India without necessary permits and approvals, possibly facilitating money laundering. Following the FIU's December 28 notices, which were not adequately responded to, the government blocked access to the URL of these platforms. This development, seen as an effort to prevent a tax leakage of nearly Rs 3,000 crore annually, is anticipated to benefit domestic cryptocurrency exchanges, such as CoinDCX, which has witnessed a substantial surge in registrations and is actively supporting investors during this transition.

Given the recent steps taken by the Indian government, you might want to explore domestic exchanges that are complying with regulations. Platforms like CoinDCX are offering incentives for those making the shift.

Remember, the crypto market can be volatile, so don't put all your money there. Only use an amount that you can afford to lose. Do thorough research, stay updated on regulations, and perhaps consider consulting a financial advisor for personalized guidance.

Take your time, weigh the risks, and make informed decisions. The crypto landscape is evolving, and a cautious approach can help you navigate it wisely.