ASCI Issues Crypto Ad Guidelines To Clamp Down On Misleading Claims
The Advertising Standards Council has laid down guidelines for crypto advertisements.
India's advertising watchdog has clamped down on commercials for cryptocurrency-related products and offerings, which have flooded TV screens over the past year promising easy money, convenient trading, fixed returns and more.
The Advertising Standards Council of India has mandated standardised disclosures for crypto ads and also clamped down on the use of words such as "currency" which could be misleading.
According to the new crypto ad guidelines effective April 1:
A standardised disclosure needs to be carried in print/visual/audio advertisements. The disclosure should read: “Crypto products and NFTs are unregulated and can be highly risky. There may be no regulatory recourse for any loss from such transactions.”
The council has specified the size of print to be used for the disclosure and the manner in which it should be broadcast through the audio-visual medium.
In social media posts, such a disclaimer must be carried in the caption as well as any picture or video attachments.
The disclaimer must be made in the dominant language of the advertisement.
The words “currency”, “securities”, “custodian” and “depositories” may not be used in advertisements as consumers associate these terms with regulated products.
Virtual digital assets must not be compared to any regulated asset class.
No advertisement may suggest that virtual digital assets could be a solution to money problems.
No advertisement shall contain statements that promise or guarantee future increase in profits.
No advertisement may show that understanding virtual digital asset products is easy or downplay risks.
Advertisements that provide information on the cost or profitability of virtual digital products shall contain clear, accurate, sufficient and updated information.
"We had several rounds of discussion with the government, finance sector regulators, and industry stakeholders before framing these guidelines," said Subhash Kamath, chairman of ASCI in the release. "Advertising of virtual digital assets and services needs specific guidance, considering that this is a new and as yet an emerging way of investing," said Kamath, adding that there is a need to make consumers aware of the risks.