Cryptocurrency Ads Cannot Use “Currency,” Must Have “High Risk” Disclaimer: New ASCI Guidelines

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Amidst the growing popularity of cryptocurrencies in India, the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has set guidelines for advertising virtual digital assets. With 10.07 crore investors, India has the largest number of cryptocurrency traders in the world, according to broker discovery and comparison platform BrokerChooser. In order to attract more and more customers, cryptocurrency exchanges have recently started making aggressive announcements. From screwing up a favorite Bollywood celebrity to a TV advert being promoted via the most popular content creators, digital asset exchanges have spent crores on advertising.

ASCI noted that these advertisements often do not adequately disclose the risks associated with cryptocurrencies and NFTs. To ensure that these advertisements do not exploit consumers’ lack of knowledge of these investment products, the authority has introduced new guidelines.

All advertisements for VDA Products and VDA Exchanges, or featuring VDAs, must carry the following disclaimer. “Crypto products and NFTs are unregulated and can be risky. There may be no regulatory avenue for any loss arising from such transactions.” ASCI said.

Printed or static, equal to at least 1/5 of the advertisement space at the bottom of the advertisement in an easy-to-read font, on a plain background,

and to the maximum font size that space allows. In the video, the disclaimer should be placed at the end of the advertisement against a clear background. A disclaimer in the text must be accompanied by any sound. The guidelines stated that the voice should be at a normal speaking pace and should not be rushed. In audio, the disclaimer must be said at the end of the ad.

In social media posts, the disclaimer must be placed in both the caption as well as in any photo or video attachments. The disclaimer should be placed in the caption up front at the beginning of the post. “Where do you post on social media. or ads contain restrictions on text in the still image, a disclaimer must be provided upfront in the caption before the ad fold.”

For social media stories that disappeared within 24 hours, the disclaimer mentioned at the end of the story should be expressed in the same way. On formats where there is a character limit, the following short disclaimer should be used “Crypto and NFT products are unregulated and risky” followed by a link to the full disclaimer.

The Authority stated that the disclaimer should be in the prevailing language of the advertisement.

The words “currency,” “securities,” “custodian,” and “depositors” may not be the same

used in advertisements for virtual digital asset products or services where consumers associate these terms with regulated products.

Any advertisement may not show that VDA products or digital asset trading can be a solution to money problems, personality problems, or other such defects. Nothing in the advertisement should reduce the risks associated with this category.

Every advertisement for VDA products must clearly state the advertiser’s name and provide an easy way to contact them (phone number or email). Any advertisement must not contain statements that promise or guarantee the future

ASCI said an increase in profits.

“Because this is a risky category, celebrities or high-profile persons appearing in VDA advertisements should take special care to ensure that they have done due diligence on the statements and claims made in the advertisement, so as not to mislead consumers.” The body has been added.

The guidelines will apply to all ads made or published on or after April 1. All previous ads must include new guidelines and disclaimers after April 15th.

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