Commercial banks all over the world prevent their clients from operations with cryptocurrency. It happens in different countries with many banks. However, there is a case, that can change everything in the world of banks cryptocurrencies interactions. The consumer protection association calls out a Portugal bank for blocking money transfers. This unique case should not be ignored by other banks and financial institutes.
The story began when Banco Santander Totta S.A. (the fourth largest bank in Portugal) blocked transfers to accounts that are believed to be related to bitcoin exchanges. The consumer protection association – DECO, decided to came out against the act of the bank. DECO was founded in 1974 and it is an independent and the largest association that defends consumers in Portugal. The company has a long story and many experts believe that it is able to help DECO to win and make the bank change their policy regarding cryptocurrency operations.
The transfer from Banco Santander Totta S.A. to a bank account in Estonia was rejected and that is the case that became the reason why DECO, the associate of consumers, asked the bank to explain the reasons why the transfer was rejected. The bank did not provide an immediate answer and it required some time to get the answer. Finally, the bank answered that the operation was not possible because the there are no regulations for virtual currencies.
DECO pointed out that the bank’s action has no legal support basis neither in EU not in Portuguese laws. At the same time, the central bank of Portugal – Banco de Portugal stated that there are no any established regulations in the country that control virtual currency exchanging operations or platforms. The bank added that their supervisory activity does not include any actions that are somehow related to operations with virtual currency. In other words, the central bank of Portugal does not prohibit the operations. Banco de Portugal does not issue any instructions that prohibit other banks work with virtual currency. DECO also stated that a representative of one of Portuguese commercial banks – Novo Banco, said that they have no any restrictions considering operations with cryptocurrencies. That is right what became the reason of the case – the central bank does not prohibit operations with virtual currencies, while a commercial bank – Banco Santander Totta decided to cancel the operation, stating that there are no any regulations considering virtual currency operations. DECO decided to do anything possible in order to make the bank change their position and provide clients with the right of working with virtual currency.