Nepal Regulators Orders ISPs To Cease Crypto Websites

Nepal’s telco regulators have ordered internet service providers to ban all cryptocurrency-related services in their recent notification released on January 8.

Nepal’s stance on crypto has previously been negative, as the nation banned crypto-related activities in 2021. Nepal’s telco has also threatened to take legal action against any entity that does not follow the orders.

In the email notification released, the Nepal Telecommunication Authority (NTA) ordered that users not have access to “websites, apps, or online networks” connected to the crypto industry or trading.

This news came after the Nepal regulatory authority found out that despite declaring crypto illegal, there has been a considerable increase in the trading of virtual digital currencies in the past few months.

Additionally, early last year, the Nepal telecommunications authority urged the public to inform them of anybody who has been participating in any illegal activities that are in any way connected to the cryptocurrency industry.

After the NTA issued the notice asking the public to notify regulators about information “related to the name of such a website, app, or online network,” they issued another notice.

This notice mentioned that there should be legal consequences if “anyone is found to have done or been doing” anything related to the crypto industry, as they have not called to block access to crypto services at that time.

Even though Nepalese authorities banned crypto, users have consistently performed crypto trading and mining within the nation, as reported by the blockchain data analysis firm Chainlysis. According to the report, Nepal is one of the emerging crypto markets for 2022.

Among the 20 ranked countries, Nepal was the eighth lowest-income nation with increased crypto-related activities. Nepali crypto users have been accepting of the crypto industry, and it has ranked 16th on the global adoption index, surpassing even the UK.

Nepal’s Crypto Ban

The crypto industry has always been susceptible to high volatility and unpredictability. Most countries that have banned the technology have been concerned about the nature of the asset and its intrinsic value.

Crypto scams and other illicit practices, including money laundering and terror financing, have kept regulatory bodies on their toes.

Many governments have followed through with the ban, which was considered a sure-shot way to protect users from bad actors.

China, Nepal, Egypt, Algeria, Iraq, Bangladesh, Morocco, Tunisia, and Qatar have imposed a complete ban on cryptocurrency.

The nation’s ban can be related to many factors and decisions, ranging from the government’s insufficient knowledge about cryptocurrencies to a lack of proper regulations in many other countries.

According to another Chainlysis report, hackers stole more than $3 billion in cryptocurrency from January to October last year. In October 2022, hackers hacked 11 DeFi protocols and stole $700 million from these platforms.

Nepal • 2022