· 1 min read

80% of South Koreans Consider Crypto a Form of Gambling, Survey Finds

Three tokens intended to represent Bitcoin, along with playing cards, dice, and banknotes, on a wooden tabletop.
Source: nickolastock/Adobe

A South Korean survey has found that 80% of citizens think crypto is a form of “gambling,” while many expressed fears about the dangers of rug-pulls and token price manipulation.

The survey was conducted by the newspaper Segye Ilbo, in conjunction with the research firm Embrain.

The survey saw 1,000 people nationwide quizzed on crypto-related matters from August 3 to August 8.

Over half (53.2%) of the respondents who said they thought crypto investment was equatable with gambling said that they felt this way because real-world assets do not underpin most tokens.

Around one in five said they were wary of rug-pulls, while 16% cited “concerns about price manipulation.”

And 5% said they were worried that coins were subject to “weak regulation by financial authorities.”

Only just under 2% said they were afraid of hacking-related risks.

The firms reported that 370 of the respondents said they had experience trading crypto, with only 20% of that number reporting losses.

But despite this apparent familiarity with crypto, under 6% of the respondents who invested in crypto said they “understood” blockchain technology “well.”

Over half of the investors said they had “some understanding” of the technology underpinning crypto.

And over 3% said they had bought crypto “with no knowledge at all” about blockchain technology.

South Korean Crypto Investors: 1 in 5 Expect BTC Prices to Rise in 2024

A massive 76% of respondents said they thought it was “inappropriate” for public officials to invest in crypto, a reflection of the ongoing Coin Gate scandal.

Confidence has also likely been shaken by a series of domestic price manipulation controversies.

The data also shows that in South Korea, crypto remains a male-dominated sector.

More than half of the men in their 20s and 30s interviewed said they had traded crypto.

And while one in five said they bought crypto as part of their long-term investment portfolios, six in 10 said they bought coins “for fun,” or in a bid to make “short-term profits.”

Respondents were also asked about their predictions for next year’s Bitcoin markets.

Most predicted stagnant prices in 2024, but 21.3% said they expected an increase.