TPM Livewire

Massachusetts To Consumers: Beware Bitcoins

Oeeq50eajld1k7rvs16i
AP Photo / Jens Kalaene

In a statement posted on the state's Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation's website, the agency referred to the recent collapse of Mt. Gox, the one-time largest Bitcoin exchange, and the recent unveiling of a Bitcoin "ATM" in Boston's South Station.

"Proponents of Bitcoin make the point that this virtual currency allows for a faster, no-fee payment system, which is attractive to both merchants and consumers," the agency said. "While there is a demand for a faster and more efficient commercial payment system, the question is whether bitcoins are the most appropriate and safest alternative to satisfy that demand."

The statement warned consumers that they could lose their money on an exchange, that Bitcoins could be stolen from "virtual wallets," that the value of Bitcoins can fluctuate, and that Bitcoins are not FDIC insured.

"[I]f you can't afford to lose the money you have, you should not buy bitcoins," the agency said. "For other consumers who are thinking about buying bitcoins, you should do your due diligence, just as with making any investment and weigh all the risks."

Read the whole thing here.

(h/t Boston Magazine)