Advertising: Internet

Treasury written question – answered on 5th March 2020.

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Photo of Bim Afolami Bim Afolami Conservative, Hitchin and Harpenden

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the Financial Conduct Authority's powers to stop the promotion of unregulated investment schemes and scams in online advertising.

Photo of John Glen John Glen Minister of State (Treasury) (City), The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

The Treasury has given the FCA strong powers to ensure that products are regulated and promoted effectively. In May last year, following the collapse of London Capital and Finance, I launched a review of the regulatory regime for the issuance of non-transferable debt securities – often known as mini-bonds. This review has also encompassed the way that these products are marketed to consumers through the financial promotions regime. The Government will be announcing the results of this review shortly.

The Government takes fraud very seriously and continues to work closely with industry to close down the vulnerabilities that fraudsters exploit and ensure members of the public have the information they need to spot a scam and stand up to fraudsters.

I recognise that issuers of fraudulent online financial promotions have no regard for the regulatory protections we have in place. I have therefore asked my officials to work with the FCA as a priority to consider how best to respond to fraudulent financial services activity online.

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