In what could be the most ironic case for cryptocurrency investors in 2018 Wells Fargo, the third largest bank in the US has been hit with a $575 million settlement after scamming its customers over a period of 15 years.
The settlement will be of particular interest to cryptocurrency investors who have been repeatedly told by the banking giant that customers couldn’t use their credit cards to purchase cryptocurrencies due to them being a risky investment. In a statement, Wells Fargo cited the “multiple risks associated with this volatile investment.”
“Customers can no longer use their Wells Fargo credit cards to purchase cryptocurrency,” a bank rep said in a statement. “We’re doing this in order to be consistent across the Wells Fargo enterprise due to the multiple risks associated with this volatile investment.”
After a nationwide investigation, it has been revealed that Wells Fargo employees opened unauthorized credit cards and bank accounts using customers names between 2002 and 2017. The fraud occurred according to employees as they were worried about losing their jobs if they didn’t meet Wells Fargo sales targets.
The result was that many bank clients were illegally charged for financial services they didn’t receive, having not actually signed up for them, including life insurance and protection insurance on millions of auto loans. California attorney general Xavier Becerra commented on the company’s violation of consumer protection standards:
“Instead of safeguarding its customers, Wells Fargo exploited them, signing them up for products — from bank accounts to insurance — that they never wanted.”
The settlement is to be distributed amongst all 50 US states and the District of Columbia, followed by a restitution review to ensure all customers illegally charged for services are reimbursed.
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