Cryptocurrency Use is Risky: NCBA Bank in Kenya

Azeez Mustapha



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Some Kenyan banks have begun disbursing warning alerts to their clients to avoid engaging in cryptocurrency transactions due to the associated risks. These warnings got sent to clients who have “used their credit and debit cards to buy cryptocurrencies on crypto exchanges.”

According to a local report, NCBA bank Kenya has advised its clients “not to buy, hold, or trade-in virtual currencies.” The bank noted that:

“In accordance with the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK)’s circular No. 14 of 2015, virtual currencies such as Bitcoin are not legal tender in Kenya. No protection, therefore, exists for you as our customer in the event that the platform holding or trading in cryptocurrency fails or goes out of business.”


Analysts highlighted that throughout the warnings, the NCBA Bank repeated lines and phrases used by central banks to talk down on cryptocurrencies. For example, NCBA Bank stated that “transactions in virtual currencies are largely untraceable, making them susceptible to abuse by criminals.”

The bank also noted that cryptocurrencies are traded on platforms that “are not properly regulated” and that users stand the chance of losing all their funds “in the event these exchanges collapse or close business.”

Cryptocurrency Use Continues to Thrive in Kenya Despite Warnings

Meanwhile, the new development alludes that the Central Bank of Kenya still disapproves of cryptocurrency use and transactions. The CBK issued advisories to Kenyans in 2015 and banks in 2018 against the use of cryptocurrencies.

Nonetheless, despite these warnings, the crypto industry in Kenya continues to thrive as new reports show that the country ranks second in peer-to-peer trading volume, behind Nigeria.

With the new round of warnings, market participants are eager to see how banks in Kenya react. It is yet to get observed if the development will slow down crypto-related activities in Kenya.


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Azeez Mustapha

Azeez Mustapha is a trading professional, currency analyst, signals strategist, and funds manager with over ten years of experience within the financial field. As a blogger and finance author, he helps investors understand complex financial concepts, improve their investing skills, and learn how to manage their money.

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