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U.K. Journalist Implicated in Crypto Ad Scam

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U.K. Journalist Implicated in Crypto Ad Scam

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Supposed cryptocurrency ads from money-saving guru Martin Lewis have been increasing on Facebook, promising Britons extraordinary returns on their investments.

A cryptocurrency scam took place in Meta’s backyard despite prior pledges to uproot fake advertising on its platform. Misleading ads using the name of Martin Lewis, a well-known money-saving expert in the U.K., offer Britons a return of £3,400 for investments as small as £190. Links on Facebook’s platform take users to a fake BBC website with an article describing Bitcoin Code, a trading bot claimed to generate extraordinary returns for investors amidst rising inflation and living costs. “Special Report: Martin Lewis’s Latest Investment Has Experts in Awe And Big Banks Terrified,” reads the headline. Lewis previously worked at the BBC as a commercial producer, following a degree in journalism obtained through Cardiff University. The ads have since been taken down.

Big tech agreed to amend policies last year

Lewis was part of the treasury committee in the U.K. last year, whose ambit of authority includes oversight of expenditure, administration, and policy of (Her Majesty’s) HM Treasury, which consists of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and others. In December 2021, tech giants Twitter, Facebook, and Microsoft agreed to only host advertisements by companies that have received permission from the FCA, the U.K.’s financial watchdog, while Google and TikTok touted policies already in place to…

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